By Bob Vazquez, Assistant Athletics Director, Strategic Communications
Long Beach, Calif. – Basketball is a 40-minute game: not 20 minutes, not 30 minutes.
Cal State Northridge played well in spurts at Long Beach State, but it wasn't enough as the 49ers erupted for several rallies to defeat the Matadors, 76-62, in a Big West Conference game on Saturday afternoon at the Pyramid.
Matador head coach Reggie Theus has enjoyed success as both a player and coach in all levels of basketball. He knows the sport. Ask him a question, and he will give an honest answer.
"We are a team that can't sustain consistently," said Theus. "It has a little to do with depth, has a little bit to do with talent and toughness. It has been an on-going theme. To win on the road, you need to have two of three components every night. You can get away without having all three components but you have to have at least two of them."
With the score tied at 10-10 at the 13:55 mark of the first half, a dunk by Stephen Maxwell started a 7-0 run for Cal State Northridge. Maxwell's score gave him his 1,000th point as a Matador, only the 18th player in school history to reach that plateau.
The Matadors played with good pace and held the lead until the 7:12 mark when a three-pointer by LBS's LaSalle McKay tied the game at 23-23. Long Beach State then regained the momentum with a 14-6 run that gave the home team a 37-29 lead at 2:35.
Back marched the Matadors to scuttle the 49er rally. A 7-2 CSUN run, helped by a jumper by Landon Drew with three seconds remaining in the first half, cut the home team lead to 39-36 at halftime.
Long Beach State held home court advantage until Drew hit a three-pointer at 15:29 to push the Matadors into a 51-50 lead.
With 11:21 remaining in the game, two foul shots by J.J. Thomas continued to give the Matadors a one-point advantage, 55-54. But the momentum shifted back to Long Beach State with a 19-5 run to give the 49ers a 73-60 advantage with 2:26 left on the clock.
Stephan Hicks ended the evening as CSUN's leading scorer with 17 points along with six rebounds and three steals. Maxwell added 14 points and nine rebounds while Drew produced a season-high ten points along with three assists and two steals.
Cal State Northridge fell to 10-11 overall and 2-4 in the Big West Conference. Long Beach State is 7-12 overall and 3-2 in league competition.
Matador Memo …
Stephen Maxwell became the 18th player in school history to score at least 1,000 points in his Matador career … With 13:55 remaining in the first half at Long Beach State, Maxwell dunked on a pass from Tre Hale-Edmerson to give him 1,000 career points … Maxwell ended the evening with 14 points to give him 1,010 points in his three-year career … Earlier this year, Josh Greene and Stephan Hicks passed the 1,000 point mark … Greene now has 1,300 career points, fifth-best in school history, while Hicks checks in with 1,190 career points to move into tenth place all-time at CSUN ahead of Markus Carr (1,173 career points, 1998-02) … Tre Hale-Edmerson is moving closer to the school record for single season blocks … With two blocks at LBS, Hale-Edmerson has 37 for the season, tied for third-best for a single season in school history along with Tremaine Townsend (37, 2007-08) and nine short of the school record (44) set by Lenny Daniel in 2009-10 … Josh Greene moved into the Matador Top-10 with participation in 111 games along with Trenton Cross (1994-98).