BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — All-around effort and a smothering defensive performance from the deep CSU Bakersfield men's basketball team resulted in a victory over Cal Poly in Friday night's Big West Conference game. The Roadrunners pulled ahead by as many as 23 points and held off a late surge from the Mustangs to earn a 62-49 victory.
Friday night's win marks Bakersfield's first Big West home win. The `Runners also claimed their 249th all-time victory in the Icardo Center with a chance for No. 250 in less than 24 hours as CSUB and Cal Poly will rematch Saturday evening at 7 p.m.
"This was a good win," said Rod Barnes, Bakersfield's Head Coach who also was able to enjoy the win on his birthday. "Any time you can get a league win, you need to be thankful for that…Hopefully we can continue to protect our home court."
Barnes added what he thought worked for his `Runners on Friday: "We had some guys play well, which is what happens when we have a lot of depth. I like our team; they are hard workers. You can hear some guys in the gym right now, working on their games after the game. We just have to come back tomorrow and make sure we play with that same kind of fire and enthusiasm."
On the night, Bakersfield enjoyed eleven different `Runners hit the floor. CSUB's well-rounded offense saw three men score in double-digit figures while a total of five `Runners tallied eight points or more. Meanwhile, CSUB's defense smothered Cal Poly, holding the Mustangs under 50 points while limiting their shooting clips to .396 from the field and .200 from three-point range.
Bakersfield controlled the pace of play throughout the first period and eventually led Cal Poly by as many as 10 points at 18-8. The Mustangs used a 6-0 run to pull within four points, but CSUB pushed right back and surged to a 30-19 advantage at the break.
Seven different `Runners got on the scoreboard in the first half with senior point guard Czar Perry leading the way with seven points. Fellow seniors Justin Edler-Davis and De'Monte Buckingham each added five points and two rebounds while the latter also chipped in a pair of assists in the period.
CSUB gradually increased its advantage all the way out to a 23-point lead at 57-34 with just over seven minutes left in the game. Cal Poly made one final run down the stretch, but the Mustangs would not draw any closer than the final 13-point margin as Bakersfield held off its visitor's advances for a 62-49 victory.
Perry paced the `Runners with 11 points, a career-high eight rebounds, and five assists on Friday night. Fellow point guard Shaun Williams equaled Perry's scoring effort while adding three assists of his own. Redshirt senior guard Taze Moore was the third `Runner to score in double-digits (10), but Bakersfield's defense was the driving factor behind CSUB's win.
Shawn Stith, a native of East Oakland, Calif., chipped in nine points and two rebounds in 18 minutes of action for the `Runners. Justin McCall, a forward from Bakersfield, Calif., contributed eight points, three boards, and a steal in the victory.