Dec. 28, 2013
By Jason Clay
By Jason Clay
FRESNO, Calif. - The Fresno State men's basketball team set a new program record with a 61-point victory over UC Merced on Saturday, winning 104-43 at the Save Mart Center.
The 61-point win eclipsed the 59-point victory over San Diego in the 1958-59 season as the largest margin of victory in school history. The Bulldogs improved to 7-6 on the season with the win in what was their final non-conference game.
"You give guys an opportunity to play and we're not trying to run the scoreboard up on anybody or embarrass anyone at any point," head coach Rodney Terry said. "We do have to execute because of the shot clock that results in a turnover and we just wanted to try to execute [our offense]."
This was the first time that Fresno State has scored over 100 points in the Terry era and the first time since scoring 107 points in a double overtime win over Nevada on March 1, 2003.
Terry was pleased with how his team played in its first game coming back from Christmas break.
"We got back from Christmas break and really tried to emphasize some things that we wanted to get batter at from the defensive standpoint as well as offensively," Terry said. "I thought for the better part of the game tonight our guys really got better in those areas."
Fresno State held UC Merced (1-12) to just 25.4 percent shooting from the floor and out-rebounded the Bobcats by 35.
Six Bulldogs scored in double figures Saturday with freshman Paul Watson leading the way with 16 points and eight rebounds.
The win snapped a three-game losing streak for Fresno State, who hosts UNLV on New Year's Day for its first Mountain West game of the season.
"I said this to our guys over the course of that span of time, we played some really good opponents on their home court and we held our own of the better part of some of those games," Terry said of the games at No. 16 Florida, Cal and Utah. "The biggest challenge we were going to have as a coaching staff was really keeping those guys up and we got better with losses as opposed to getting better this time of year with wins, but we were playing pretty good competition.
"Again, keeping this group confident, keeping them up and giving them confidence today was really good for our guys."
Fresno State shot a season-high 58.2 percent and was able to get 30 second-chance points off of 21 offensive rebounds in the game.
Senior Tyler Johnson added 14 points, seven rebounds and six assists. Alex Davis put in 13 on 5-of-6 shooting and Allen Huddleston scored 15 points off the bench to lead the three reserves that scored in double figures.
"Catch the Wave" - 940 AM ESPN Radio is the home of the Fresno State men's basketball team.
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