SAN LUIS OBISPO – Senior guard Ridge Shipley (above) led four Cal Poly men's basketball players in double-digit scoring figures with 17 points Thursday evening as the Cal Poly men's basketball program pushed its winning streak to three successive games with a 76-70 victory versus CSUN inside Mott Athletics Center.
Sophomore guard Donovan Fields added 16 points for Cal Poly (11-18, 6-9), which moved a game behind sixth-place CSUN (11-17, 7-8) in the Big West Conference standings.
With one game remaining in the regular season, Cal Poly – to secure the No. 5 seed for the March 9-11 Big West Conference Tournament – need only defeat last-place UC Santa Barbara at home on Saturday, March 4 and have CSUN drop its Saturday finale at Cal State Fullerton. Fourth-place Hawai'i is ineligible for postseason play, a fact that moves the five programs below the Warriors in the Big West standings up one spot for conference tournament seeding.
Trailing by as much as 10 points early in Thursday's matchup, Cal Poly utilized a 6-0 run midway through the opening half to close its deficit to 19-18 11-and-a-half minutes into action.
The Mustangs drew to a one-point deficit once more before a Shipley layup provided Cal Poly a 26-25 lead with four minutes remaining in the first half.
Cal Poly closed the opening half by keeping CSUN to just one field goal during the final six minutes with the Mustangs taking a 30-28 advantage into the break.
The opening five-and-a-half minutes of the second half featured three lead changes before Cal Poly wrested control at 39-38 following a Fields jumper.
The Mustangs then held CSUN without a field goal for nearly five minutes in stretching the lead to 48-42 with nine minutes to play.
Cal Poly never led by less than six points the remainder of the evening.