Cal State Northridge Defeats La Sierra University, 97-79

Box Score - CSUN vs La Sierra

By Bob Vazquez, Assistant Athletics Director, Strategic Communications

Northridge, Calif. –
Robert Cid loves to play basketball.

But at 5-feet-10, 160-pounds, Duke, North Carolina and UCLA aren't exactly breaking down your door to offer a scholarship and a promise of an NBA career.

Cid enjoyed a modest high school career at Dos Pueblos High School in Santa Barbara where he averaged eleven points per game as a senior. At Santa Barbara City College, the scoring totals fell to 5.7 ppg.

With no four-year NCAA Division I offers, Cid figured his playing days were over when he enrolled at Cal State Northridge to devote full-time his academic endeavors as a Psychology major. The junior has a strong academic background with a 3.9 GPA.

Fate and timing can be so important in the future of one's life. CSUN was in need of filling out its roster. Cid's talents as a hard-worker, dedication and his popularity with the other Matador players earned him a spot on the 2013-14 squad.

Cid knew that as a walk-on, there would be no assurances he would ever see one second of playing time on the court. In the first seven games of the season, Cid never inched close to the court for any playing time.

But on Sunday afternoon against La Sierra University with 1:46 remaining on the clock, and the Matadors holding a sizable 17-point lead (93-76), head coach Reggie Theus calmly walked to the end of the bench and told Cid to get ready, "Get stretched. You're going into the game."

As Theus told reporters in the post-game press conference, "Robert deserved it (the chance to play). Robert does everything and anything we ask him to do. He does it with energy and a purpose. That is a mark of leadership. He understands his role and he accepts it with a smile and a work ethic. I was so happy to see him get an opportunity to compete. The players on the team like Robert and respect Robert."

As Cid approached the scorers' table to check into the game, the small crowd of less than 200 fans roared their approval. Cid, a walkon, was getting a change to realize his dream of competing in an NCAA Division I basketball game.

Cid played like a champion. The junior point-guard directed the offense with precision. Then with 1:22 left on the clock, Cid drove to the basket and was fouled.

Upped stepped Cid to the free throw line for two shots.

Cid hit both free throws. The first free throw bounced around the rim for what seemed like an eternity, but the ball finally nestled into the hoop. Cid's second free throw swished through the nets with ease.

"There was pressure," admitted Cid. "It's your first shot as a Matador. I'm thankful it rolled in. The second free throw was a lot easier."

Cid had a chance to score a basket with seven seconds on the clock but a layup just oozed off the rim.

"Whenever a coach calls my name, I'm ready." said Cid, who enjoyed the applause of his teammates in the locker room after the game. "I felt confident out there. I got into the flow of the game a little bit. It felt good out there handling the basketball trying to make something happen. This is something I will remember the rest of my life. To be a part of the team is great."

The final gun sounded. Cid helped Cal State Northridge to a 97-79 victory on a Sunday afternoon at the Matadome.

"I just looked forward to the opportunity," said Cid. "I didn't even know last year where I would be right now. I didn't think I would be playing Division I basketball. Just to have the opportunity to get into the game and score my first points as a Matador, it feels great. I am really thankful to be here. I am always looking for ways to get better and help the team. I want to bring energy and play hard."

Stephan Hicks and Stephen Maxwell each produced a double-double to help lead the Matadors to victory along with Cid's heroics. Hicks and Maxwell each scored 21 points. Maxwell garnered a game and season-high 13 rebounds while Hicks chipped in with ten boards, also a season-high.

Hicks now has 998 career points in two-plus seasons at Cal State Northridge, just two short of the 1,000 point plateau. Only 16 other players in school history have reached that figured in the 55-year history of Matador basketball.

"I am extremely blessed," said Hicks. "I want to stay humble. The experience has been great."

Josh Greene came off the bench to score 17 points along with five assists and four rebounds.

The Matadors shot a season-high .586 (24-for-58) from the field to raising their record to 4-4. CSUN also enjoyed a rebound advantage with 45 compared to 29 for the Golden Eagles.

La Sierra fell to 2-8.

Cal State Northridge tried to break the game open early. The Matadors raced to a 13-8 lead at the 16:08 mark but in the next six minutes, CSUN's lead was cut to one point, 19-18.

The first half ended with Cal State Northridge in front, 44-38.

La Sierra University never gave up. A 6-1 Golden Eagles run to start the second half cut the Matadors lead to 45-44 at the 18:44 mark.

With 13:06 remaining in the game, CSUN led 56-53. A 10-0 run in a nearly two minute span gave the home team a 67-53 lead. CSUN advanced its lead to as many as 19 points, 95-76, with 1:22 on the clock.

Cal State Northridge will host Southern Utah on Tuesday, December 3, 2013. Tipoff is slated for 7:00 pm

Matador Memo …
Tre Hale-Edmerson blocked a career-high six shots to give him 44 in his short career at Cal State Northridge, ninth-best in Matador history … The six blocks ties the original record set by Calvin Chitwood at Washington (12/22/07) … Josh Greene continues to climb up the charts in the Matador book … Greene now has 168 three-pointers to inch closer to the school record of 182 set by Ian Boylan (2001-05)Greene has attempted 450 three-pointers in school history, third-best in school history, and 47 short of the school record held by BoylanGreene produced a season-high five assists along with a season-high four three-pointers … Greene now has 270 career assists which is now tied for eighth place in school annals with Tony Prestera (1975-78)Greene is also inching closer to the career minutes Top-10 … Greene played 29 minutes against La Sierra to give him 2,597 minutes, only 28 minutes short of catching Thomas Shewmake (2003-07) with 2,625 … Stephan Hick's career points per game average of 15.8 is currently tied for eighth place with Bob Burge (1970-72) … With Hick's three free throws against La Sierra, the junior now has 296 in his two-plus year career, tenth-best in school history … Greene is eleventh all-time with 278 charity makes … Greene's career free throw percentage (.845) is third-best in a career at CSUN, while Hicks checks in at .810, seventh-best … Stephen Maxwell's 13 rebounds were one short of his career-best set at UC Santa Barbara (1/24/13) … J.J. Thomas collected a season-high six rebounds … Ben Vozzola enjoyed a productive game with a season-high eight points along with a season-high six assists.





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