Nov. 13, 2009
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - It was a tale of two halves for the Cal State Northridge Matadors (0-1) as they were defeated 89-64 Friday evening in their 2009-10 season-opening game against the seventh-ranked Purdue Boilermakers (1-0).
The Matadors now have the next three days off as they travel from Indiana to Tempe, Ariz. to participate as one of 16 teams in the Preseason NIT Tournament.
As one of four teams in the West bracket, Northridge will begin tournament competition against the TCU Horned Frogs on Monday, and will face either Arizona State or Texas State the very next day. Tip-off for the Matadors' game on Monday will take place at 8:30 p.m. MT/7:30 p.m. PT.
In front of a spirited sellout crowd of 14,123 at Mackey Arena, the Matadors fell behind quickly as the Boilermakers scored on seven of their first eight opportunities to jump out to a 21-3 lead in the opening minutes of the game.
Even though CSUN contested nearly every Boilermaker shot during the first 20 minutes of action, Purdue was just able connect on a majority of their shots as they entered the locker room at the half shooting 51.6 percent from the field (16-31), and 61.5 percent from beyond the three-point arc (8-13).
Head Coach Bobby Braswell had to turn to his bench early in the game as the Matadors were whistled for ten fouls in the first six minutes, two of them earned by starting forward Willie Galick who had to sit out a majority of the the first half.
Only two additional minutes would pass before Purdue put the Matadors in the double-bonus as well as both teams were whistled for a combined 30 fouls during the first half alone.
The barrage of quick whistles would turn into a blessing for CSUN as half of their points scored in the opening half were earned at the free throw line.
After both teams returned to the floor in the second half, the Matadors were able to attack the paint and hit their outside jump shots with greater success.
Having only scored 20 points in the first half, CSUN finished the second 20 minute session having scored an additional 44 points against nearly the same line-up as they had faced during the first half of play as neither team decided to empty their respective bench until the final media timeout of the game.
Even though CSUN faced a sizable deficit for most of the game, they were still able to out-rebound their opponents by four, finished the game shooting over 50% from the field (53.8%), and outscored their opponents by ten points in the second half.
Playing in his first regular season game as a Matador, and finishing the evening as his team's leading scorer was forward Kevin Menner as he quietly crafted an 18-point performance in his 21 minutes on the floor.
Four of Daniels' points came from the free-throw line while his teammate Galick earned all of his points in the second half after missing most of the first half due to foul trouble.
The Matadors now have three days to prepare for their next game as they open up competition in the Preseason NIT at Arizona State on Monday against TCU. Matador basketball fans can listen to Alan Zinsmeister's internet radio broadcast from the Wells Fargo Center on the campus of Arizona State beginning at 7:30 p.m. on GoMatadors.com.