Cal State Northridge Returns To The Win Column With 77-57 Victory At UC Davis
Davis, Ca - Tremaine Townsend turned in one of the all-time best efforts in the 50-year history of Cal State Northridge men's basketball history with a career-high 22 rebounds and a career-high 21 points to help propel the Matadors to a convincing 77-57 victory at UC Davis on Saturday night.
Townsend's 22 rebounds were only two short of the school record set by George Robnett against UC Irvine on Jan. 16, 1971. Stan Swinger grabbed 23 rebounds against Evansville (12/11/65) and Jerry Joseph collected 23 rebounds against Cal State Stanislaus (12/28/68). Townsend's heroic effort also bested the Big West 2007-08 season-best effort of 18 by Calvin Chitwood in the season opener against Chicago State (11/10/07).
"Even when the game was out of reach, Tremaine was still working," said Matador head coach Bobby Braswell. "Tremaine made some great moves in the post, hit some outside shots including a three-pointer. He told me earlier today that he had been a little complacent, but he said 'coach I'm ready to go.' I'm proud of his effort. "
Townsend is only one of seven players in school history to grab 21 or more rebounds in a game.
Townsend's rebound's efforts were also only six short of the league record of 28 set by Michael Jackson of Cal State Los Angeles against San Fernando Valley State (1/22/71) and UCSB's Eric McArthur vs New Mexico State (11/11/90).
Townsend, starting his first collegiate game, hit 9-of-11 shots from the floor, and added to his all-around great game with three blocks, two steals and an assist in 33 minutes of play.
Team play also took center stage in the eleventh double-digit victory of the 2007-08 campaign.The Matadors shot .533 (32-for-60) from the floor, out rebounded the Aggies (36-30), collected 22 assists, held UCD to a 32 percent shooting percentage (16-for-50), and forced the home team into 22 turnovers. The Matadors also added a season-high 17 steals. The 17 steals is the ninth-best effort for a single game in school history. Ironically, CSUN collected 17 steals in an earlier season game against UC Davis (1/10/08).
"It was a great team effort," said Braswell. "I'm blessed and thankful that this team came out tonight and realized what they had to do. Defensively, the effort was good from the opening tipoff to the end."
The victory maintained the Matadors hold on first place in the Big West along with Pacific. The Tigers beat Long Beach State, 70-55. Cal State Northridge now is 16-6 overall and 8-2 in the conference.
UC Davis, 8-15 overall and 2-8 in the Big West, played tough against the Matadors in the first half. The Aggies jumped to a 6-0 lead and maintained the lead until 7:17 of the first half when Chitwood scored on a dunk to give the Matadors a 16-14 lead. The first half ended with CSUN in front, 26-25.
At the break, the Matadors only shot .385 (10-for-26) but defensively, the Matadors looked good. UC Davis was held to only .a 269 shooting percentage (7-for-26).
"Offensively, we had some trouble scoring, but I kept saying to the team to keep defending," said Braswell. "We were getting (defensive) stops and turnovers, but we were not converting."
In the second half, the Matador offense got into high gear, shooting .647 (22-for-34) and outscoring the home team, 51-32. A 48-46 lead with 11:17 to play, turned into a 68-51 lead in the next five minutes. With 1:30 remaining, Cal State Northridge enjoyed its biggest lead, 73-53.
"Tonight, our bench was our strength," said Braswell. "Rodrigue Mels played his best game of the year (six points, five steals, three assists in 17 minutes). Their point-guard was giving us problems, and we put Rodrigue on him, and he (Roderigue) must have forced four or five turnovers in the second half. Rodrigue gave us really great energy defensively. Calvin Chitwood came off the bench to really help us tonight. Deon Tresvant added some key three-pointers, and don't forget Rai Colston. Rai hasn't been playing much. We met three days before we left on this road trip, and he had a desire to play more. I told him you never know when your opportunity arrives. Tonight he took advantage of his opportunity. Rai made a great effort. We took good shots and didn't turn the ball over when Rai was in the game."
Matador Moment ...
Calvin Chitwood was battling the flu but came off the bench to score 13 points (5-for-5 from the floor) in 24 minutes of play ... Deon Tresvant added 12 points off the bench along with a season-high five assists ... Nine more assists for Josh Jenkins tonight against UC Davis gives him 150 for the season to pass Markus Carr (2001-02, 148) into third place for a single-season at Cal State Northridge ... The Matadors return home on Feb. 16 to face UC Riverside at The Matadome ... Tipoff is 7:05 p.m.