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Cal Poly Holds Off UC Davis for 58-53 Big West Victory

Cal Poly Holds Off UC Davis for 58-53 Big West Victory

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. -- Senior guard Reese Morgan made six consecutive free throws and blocked a UC Davis shot, all in the final 25 seconds, as Cal Poly snapped a three-game home losing streak with a 58-53 victory over the Aggies in a Big West Conference men's basketball game Thursday night in the Mott Athletics Center.

Morgan (pictured above) finished with a game-high 15 points and redshirt freshman forward Josh Martin produced his third double-double of the year with 11 points and 10 rebounds for the Mustangs, 10-15 overall and 4-8 in Big West games.

UC Davis, led by junior guard Darius Graham with 14 points and senior forward Josh Fox with 12, fell to 10-15 and 5-7.

The lead changed hands 11 times and the score was tied six times until five minutes into the second half when sophomore forward Luke Meikle hit a two-pointer to tie the game at 30-30 and followed with a three-pointer for a 33-30 Cal Poly lead with 14:02 to play.

Coach Joe Callero's Mustangs built an eight-point advantage at 50-42 with 3:14 to go on a layup by senior forward Brian Bennett. The visiting Aggies narrowed the gap to two points, 52-50, on a jumper by Fox with 1:09 to play before Morgan's 6-for-6 performance at the line sealed the win for Cal Poly.

The Mustangs led 25-22 at halftime, marking the fewest total by a Cal Poly opponent in the opening 20 minutes of play this season. UTSA was held to 26 points on Dec. 22.

Cal Poly's two lowest-scoring games so far this season both were against UC Davis. The Aggies posted a 66-52 triumph on Jan. 30 in Davis. The Mustangs have been held under 60 points only twice this year and UC Davis' defense accomplished the feat both times.

The defending Big West champion Aggies had beaten Cal Poly five straight times until Thursday night when the Mustangs produced a 46-26 advantage on the boards. In addition to Martin's 10 rebounds, Bennett, senior guard David Nwaba and freshman guard Jaylen Shead all grabbed seven caroms.

Junior center Neal Monson corralled 10 boards for UC Davis, all on the defensive end, to go with his eight points.

UC Davis made 38 percent of its floor shots, including seven of 17 from three-point range, while Cal Poly connected on just 33 percent of its field goal tries -- equalling its low for the year -- and only five of 22 from long range.

The win was Callero's 100th as head coach at Cal Poly.

Opening a three-game home stand with Thursday's win, Cal Poly will host CSUN on Saturday night and Cal State Fullerton next Thursday, with both tips set for 7 p.m.