February 16, 2010

Fox Sports West, Large Crowd Awaits CSUN-Cal Poly Tilt

Feb. 16, 2010

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Northridge Notes
The Cal State Northridge basketball team is in a bad mood these days ... The Matadors have lost their last two games in the final seconds ... Cal State Bakersfield (2/10/10) hit a basket at the buzzer to beat the Matadors, 59-57, and then Cal State Fullerton (2/13/10) scored on a basket and free throw in the final seconds to beat CSUN in a heartbreaking 113-112 triple overtime decision in CSUN's last game at The Matadome ... Next up is a Big West Conference game against Cal Poly on Wednesday, Feb. 17, at 7:30 p.m on CSUN's home court ... In their last meeting, the Mustangs scored a one-point victory, 73-72 at Mott Gym.

Close Calls
Eight CSUN games have been decided by three points or less ... CSUN is 2-6 in those games ... CSUN has played four one-point games (1-3) this year ... That hasn't happened since the 1992-93 campaign when CSUN also played four one-point contests ... Three of the four one-point losses this year were against Big West schools, a 73-72 loss at Cal Poly (1/23/10), a 69-68 loss to LBS (1/28/10) and a 113-112 overtime decision to Cal State Fullerton (2/10/10) ... Prior to this year, CSUN had played in only three one-point games against BWC schools since joining the league in 2001-02.

Triple Test
The classic game (2/13/10) between Cal State Northridge and Cal State Fullerton featured a number of mind boggling stats ... The two teams combined for 225 points, 155 field goal attempts, 110 free throw attempts, 109 rebounds, 81 free throws made, 75 fouls, eleven player foul outs, 17 ties and 15 lead changes ... Ten players scored in double figures ... CSUN's bench outscored CSF's bench, 77-28 ... The nine-member Big West schools have played 15,406 games dating back to the 1921-22 season ... Only 19 of the 15,406 games have gone into triple overtime ... CSUN's 51-year basketball history includes just two triple overtime games ... The Matadors are 1-1.

Player Points
Several CSUN players are among the stat leaders in the Big West ... Kenny Daniels (6-4, 210, Sr, F/G, St. Louis, Mo) is fifth and ninth, respectively, in field goal pct. (.498) and scoring (14.6 ppg) ... Daniels also ranks fourth in free throw percentage (.802) ... Lenny Daniel (6-7, 210, Jr, F, Richmond, Va) ranks third in rebounding at 8.6 rpg ... Daniel ranks second in blocked shots (28, 1.2 bpg) and seventh in field goal percentage (.482) ... Daniel has recorded a team-best six double-doubles (points-rebounds) ... That stat is second-best in the conference behind LBS's T.J. Robinson's 15 ... Vinnie McGhee (6-0, 165, RS So, G, Oakland, Ca) is ninth in the BWC in three-pointers made at 1.8 per game ... Mark Hill (5-11, 175, Sr, G, Los Angeles, Ca) remains fifth in the Big West Conference in steals (35, 1.46 spg).

Northridge Notables
Mark Hill (5-11, 175, Senior, Guard, Los Angeles, Ca) has scored in double figures in five of the last seven games ... That includes a career-high 24 points at Cal Poly (1/23/10) and 18 points (12-of-14 from the free throw line) in his last game against Cal State Fullerton (2/13/10) ... Lenny Daniel (6-7, 210, Junior, Forward, Richmond, Va) has collected double-digits in points in nine of his last eleven games ... Three of those games have been double--doubles (points-rebounds) ... Kenny Daniels (6-4, 210, Senior, F/G, St. Louis, Mo) has been CSUN's most productive offensive player in the last three games ... Daniels has put together totals of 18, 24 and 25 points in his last three games against Long Beach State (2/6/10), Cal State Bakersfield (2/10/10) and Cal State Fullerton (2/13/10) ... Daniels has hit 26-of-44 shots (.590) along with 19 rebounds.

Lizarraga LEdger
Michael Lizarraga (6-7, 230, Junior, Forward, Dixon, Ca.) continues to be an inspiration and a hero to many people ... Lizarraga is believed to be the only deaf player competing in NCAA Division I major college basketball ... Lizarraga has been the subject of numerous feature stories including the Los Angeles Daily News (2/4/10), ESPNU, mattbrownphoto.com and upcoming major features on Channel 2 in Los Angeles, the Daily Sundial and during halftime of the CSUN-UC Irvine game on Feb. 27 on Fox Sports ... Lizarraga has been a starter in eight of the team's 25 games ... His best game of the year was an eight-point, six rebound, three block and two steal performance at Washington (12/6/09) ... Lizarraga has grabbed six or more rebounds in five games.

Charity Chatter
With at least seven more games to play (five conference, one non-league, at least one Big West Tournament game), CSUN is on pace to break the school record for single season free throw attempts ... CSUN has attempted 722 free throws, an average of 28.9 attempts per game ... At that pace, CSUN would finish the year with 924, easily breaking the school record of 868 (26 games) during the 1966-67 season ... The 722 charity tosses ranks CSUN fifth nationally behind Kansas St. (752), Wyoming (751), Vermont (735), and Morgan St. (734), according to the NCAA ... The 49 free throw attempts against Seattle (1/11/10) and Cal State Fullerton (2/13/10) are third-best for a single season in school history ... The 37 made free throws against Cal State Fullerton (2/13/10) were second-best for a single game in Matador history.

Conference Corner
Cal State Northridge will be among eight schools that will be a part of the fourth annual 76 Classic to be held on Thanksgiving weekend in 2010 at the Anaheim Convention Center ... In addition to the Matadors, the tourney field includes Oklahoma State (Big 12), Penn State (Big Ten), DePaul (Big East), Stanford (Pac-10), Tulsa (Conference USA), UNLV (Mountain West) and Virginia Tech (ACC) ... The 76 Classic features four games each day through three days, Nov. 25, 26 and 28 ... Each team will compete in one game per day, advancing through a backet-tournament format ... The two teams that remain undefeated throughout will face off in a championship game on Sunday, Nov. 28 ... The BWC is hosting the 76 Classic ... Games will be televised on ESPN, ESPNU and ESPN2 ... The BWC and the Honda Center (home of the NHL's Anaheim Ducks) have teamed up to form a five-year partnership to host the annual men and women's post-season basketball tournies beginning in 2011 ... The Big West Tournament is the oldest NCAA Division I post-season basketball tournament in the west dating back to 1976 ... The Big West Tournament has been held at the Anaheim Convention Center (1977-82 and 2001-2010).

Record Review
The Matador record book is in for an update in 2009-10 ... Lenny Daniel (6-7, 210, Junior, Forward, Richmond, Va) has collected five blocks in three games this year (Idaho on 12/3/09, UC Riverside on 1/14/10 and CS Fullerton on 2/13/10), one short of the school record ... Daniel now has 28 blocks this year, and is tied for fifth place in the CSUN record book held by Keith Higgins (1996-97) ... Kenny Daniels (6-4, 210, Senior, Forward, St. Louis, Mo) had 13 free throws against Idaho (12/3/09) which ranks seventh-best in the school record book ... Daniels' 39 points vs Idaho (12/3/09) is third-best for a single game in CSUN history ... Only 40 points by Mark Cooley at Cal State Fullerton (2/18/67) and a school record 47 points by Ollie Carter vs Westmont (2/1/66) are better ... Daniels hit 12-of-17 shots along with 13 of 15 free throws ... Daniels completed the evening with ten rebounds in 31 minutes of play ... The 39 points is the most by a BWC player in 2009-10 ... Mark Hill (5-11, 175, Senior, Guard, Los Angeles, Ca) had 12 free throws against Cal State Fullerton (2/13/10), ninth-best in school history ... All the following record book stats took place vs Cal State Fullerton (2/13/10) in the classic triple overtime game - the 37 free throws made is second-best all-time at CSUN, the 49 free throw attempts are third-best for a single game, the 39 CSUN fouls tied The Matadome record originally set vs Nevada (11/17/01), the 112 points scored by CSUN is 15th-best for a single game in school history, the 61 CSUN rebounds were ninth-best for a single game in school history, and the seven CSUN team blocks were seventh-best for a single game in CSN history.

Defensive Dialogue
Every coach will tell you "Defense Wins" ... In five of CSUN's nine wins, the Matadors have held the opposition to under 40 percent shooting ... From behind the arc, the stats show an impressive slate of six games in which CSUN has held the enemy under 32 percent from behind the arc ... In the nine wins, Cal State Northridge has outrebounded the opposition six times including 54 rebounds against Seattle (1/11/10) and 50 against Cal State Bakersfield (11/20/09) ... CSUN's defense resulted in opponents lows (47 points, field goals made with 15, and field goal attempts with 47) in a 63-47 win at UC Riverside (2/4/10) ... The 12 steals at UC Riverside were season-bests ... Give the offense a little props as well ... The ten three-pointers at UCR were a season-best ... Nine players played at least 13 minutes with three reserves (Raymond Cody, Kenny Daniels, Michael Lizarraga) playing 25, 21 and 13 minutes respectively ... CSUN reserves accounted for 35 of the team's 63 points.

Team Totals
The latest Big West overall stats show CSUN is first in rebounding (38.0 rpg), second in steals (7.7 spg), and third in scoring offense (71.7 ppg), field goal percentage defense (.419) and three-point field goal percentage defense (.344) ... The 112 points scored by CSUN vs Cal State Fullerton (2/13/10) is the second--best effort by a Big West team this year ... Cal State Fullerton tallied 112 points against CSUN (2/13/10).

Mustang Memo
Cal Poly is 9-15 overall and 6-6 in the conference ... The Mustangs are 4-11 on the road ... However in their last game, the Mustangs scored a 87-84 double overtime win at UC Riverside (2/13/1) ... Four players are averaging in double figures - Lorenzo Keeler (15.2 ppg, #6 in the BWC), Will Donahue (11.8 ppg), Shawn Lewis (10.8 ppg) and David Hanson (10.2 ppg).

Series Story
The series between CSUN and Cal Poly is the oldest in Matador history (84 games) ... Cal Poly leads 44-40 ... Their last meeting saw Cal Poly score a 73-72 victory on Jan. 23, 2010, at Mott Gym ... Mark Hill (5-11, 175, Senior, Guard, Los Angeles, Ca) scored a career-high 24 points for the Matadors ... Lorenzo Keeler led Cal Poly with 23 points and five assists ... CSUN has won five of the last six meetings at The Matadome ... Last year (2/11/09), CSUN scored a 67-55 victory over Cal Poly at The Matadome ... Kenny Danels scored eleven points and grabbed six caroms ... Willie Galick had eleven rebounds.

Coaching Chatter
Bobby Braswell is in his 14th season as head coach of the Cal State Northridge Matadors ... His overall record is 214-197 (.521) ... Braswell has guided CSUN to back-to-back Big West regular season championships (2007-08, 2008-09) ... For his efforts, Braswell was awarded Big West Coach of the Year honors in both seasons ... Joe Callero is in his first season at Cal Poly with a mark of 9-15 ... Callero's career mark (2 seasons at Puget Sound, 8 years at Seattle, first year at CP) is 148-145.

History Hoopla
The 2009-10 season marks the 52nd season of Cal State Northridge basketball ... Since the program's inception in 1958-59, CSUN has posted an all-time record of 686-731 (.484) ... In the 1,417 games that CSUN has played since the inaugural 1958-59 campaign, the Matadors have scored 104,642 points.

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