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Second-Half Long Beach State Run Sends Cal Poly to 74-65 Loss

Second-Half Long Beach State Run Sends Cal Poly to 74-65 Loss

LONG BEACH, Calif. – Senior guard Kyle Odister (right) hit three three-pointers to finish with a team-leading 11 points, but an unanswered second-half run by Long Beach State helped the 49ers outdistance the Cal Poly men's basketball program inside Walter Pyramid on Saturday evening, 74-65

Junior guard Maliik Love added nine points for Cal Poly (9-15, 5-6), which trailed by two points at halftime and three with 11 minutes to play before hitting just one field goal during the ensuing six minutes. The drought placed Cal Poly into a double-digit deficit and the Mustangs failed to close to within six points of Long Beach State (11-14, 7-4) the remainder of the night.

The Mustangs, who received eight points and a team-high seven rebounds from senior forward Chris Eversley, were held to a 35.0 percent (21-for-60) percent field goal mark while conceding a 53.8 (28-for-52) percent figure to Long Beach State.

Cal Poly returns to the Mott Athletics Center to contest a two-game home stand against Cal State Fullerton (Thursday, Feb. 20) and UC Riverside (Saturday, Feb. 22). Both games tip at 7 p.m.

Facing an early 8-3 deficit, the Mustangs received three-pointers from freshman guard Ridge Shipley and Odister to snatch their first lead of the night. The two sides traded the lead three more times during the ensuing three minutes, but a three-pointer from Long Beach State junior guard Kris Gulley provided the 49ers a 14-12 edge and the lead for the remainder of the first half.

Long Beach State twice extended its lead to five points late in the first half, but a jumper from Mustang freshman guard Ridge Shipley with 41 seconds remaining allowed Cal Poly to cut its deficit to 28-26 heading into the break.

Mustang sophomore forward Joel Awich converted a three-point play to open the second half, but the lead changed hands a further three times on the next three possessions. With Long Beach State leading 36-32 and 15 minutes to play, Mustang wing Michael Bolden brought Cal Poly to within one with a three-pointer before the junior completed the feat once more a minute later.

Clinging to a 39-38 lead, however, Long Beach State received a pair of three-pointers and a layup from junior guard Tyler Lamb on three successive possessions to extend its largest lead of the night to 47-38 with 12 minutes to play.

A quick 6-0 run that was backboned by two jumpers from sophomore forward Brian Bennett brought Cal Poly to within three points, but the Mustangs hit just one more field goal during the next six minutes. Down 60-49 with six minutes on the clock, Cal Poly's 66-60 chasm following an Anthony Silvestri free throw was as close as the Mustangs came to Long Beach State.