FOUR PLAYERS SCORE IN DOUBLE FIGURES AS MENâ€™S BASKETBALL DOWNS CAL POLY, 71-67
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Sultan Toles-Bey scored a team-high 16 points, and John Dickson, Duro Bjegovic and Jackson Carbajal each dropped in 13 to lead Sacramento State to a 71-67 victory over Cal Poly in a non-conference men’s basketball game Saturday evening at the Nest.
In a game which featured 11 ties, 10 lead changes and neither team leading by more than five points the entire way, it was a Carbajal three-pointer with 5:31 remaining that put Sacramento State on top, 59-56. The Hornets never trailed again, and finished the game shooting 59.5 percent (25-42) from the field, 61.1 percent (11-18) from the three-point line and 76.9 percent (10-13) from the free throw stripe.
Cal Poly shaved Sacramento State’s lead to one point on two occasions during the final four minutes, but could get no closer. After a jumper from John Dickson put the Hornets on top, 66-63, with 1:54 remaining, Cal Poly’s Chris O’Brien swooped in for what looked like an easy lay-up opportunity, but Carbajal came in from behind to deliver the biggest block of the game. Sacramento State eventually regained possession, and Cal Poly elected to foul Carbajal with 42 seconds remaining. The true freshman from Clovis, Calif., knocked down both free throws to put the Hornets up, 68-63.
Sacramento State would knock down five of its final seven free throw attempts (spanning the final 42 seconds) to ice the game. Carbajal made two more freebies with 10 seconds left to deliver the final dagger. The Hornets posted season highs in field goal percentage, three-pointers, three-point field goal percentage, free throw percentage, assists (19) and blocked shots (4).
Sacramento State picked up a much-needed victory and improved to 2-3. The team’s three losses have come by an average of 4.3 points per game, including an overtime loss to Cal State Bakersfield to open the year. The Hornets will now embark upon a stretch that will see the team play seven of its next eight games on the road. In fact, Sacramento State will play at home just once (Dec. 10) over the next 39 days.
Cal Poly, which was coming off a 55-48 home victory over Loyola Marymount on Wednesday night, dropped to 2-3 with the loss. Entering tonight’s game, the Mustangs had been limiting their opponents to 36.7 percent shooting.
“We’ve been working extremely hard in practice on executing our offense, and tonight it really paid off,” Sacramento State third-year head coach Brian Katz said. “We made some big baskets down the stretch, and received good contributions from a number of players.”
Of Toles-Bey’s 16 points, 13 came in the second half. The senior from Compton finished the game 5-of-7 from the three-point line and posted a career-best eight assists in 39 minutes. That included big three-pointers at the 10:05, 8:06 and 2:46 marks of the second half. The last three-pointer gave the Hornets a four-point lead after Cal Poly had shaved the lead to one point.
Carbajal, who was in foul trouble most of the evening, made the most of his 17 minutes. He finished the game with 13 points on 3-of-4 shooting from the field (2-of-2 on three-pointers), and 5-of-5 from the free throw line. Carbajal accounted for seven of Sacramento State’s final 15 points, and did it all with four fouls.
Bjegovic remains the only Hornet to score in double figures in all five games, as the senior forward had four rebounds and three assists to go along with his 13 points. Dickson’s 13 points came on 6-of-9 shooting while playing in a career-high 35 minutes. Junior Walter Jackson added a team-best six rebounds in 19 minutes.
Cal Poly was led by David Hanson’s 23 points as he finished 9-of-15 from the field and 5-of-10 from the three-point line. Joining Hanson in double figures for the Mustangs were Shawn Lewis (14 points, seven rebounds) and Chris O’Brien (12 points). Will Donahue added a game-high 10 rebounds.
Sacramento State begins its stretch of road games this Tuesday, Nov. 30, when the team travels to Washington State. Tip is 7:05 p.m.