Pioneers survive attack from Bristol Bears
December 4, 2014
It was a tale of two halves for the Cal State East Bay men’s basketball team on Saturday at Pioneer Gymnasium.
Despite being outscored in the second half, the Pioneers were able to secure their second victory of the season, defeating Bristol University from Anaheim 69-64. CSUEB is now 2-2 overall with California Collegiate Athletic Association play slated to begin on Friday against Cal Poly Pomona.
The Pioneers came out on fire shooting 47.8 percent from the field outscoring the Bears (1-3 overall) 34-24 taking a 10-point lead going into halftime with the offensive surge.
CSUEB jumped out to a quick 16-4 advantage triggered by junior guard Jack Pasquini who scored the first seven points for the Pioneers to open the game.
“The difference between the two halves was our aggressiveness,” senior guard Jacari Whitfield said. “In the first half we were more aggressive and we didn’t settle for jump shots.”
CSUEB struggled in the second half allowing the Bristol Bears to claw their way back into the game. Eight turnovers and a 38.5 shooting percentage from the field for the Pioneers allowed Bristol to come within two points with just over five minutes to play after freshman forward Bryan Mahood nailed a three-pointer for the Bears.
Mahood was impressive for the Bears scoring 12 points in just 11 minutes on the floor in the second half. Mahood finished the game with a team-high 18 points in just 26 minutes of playing time for Bristol.
Seventeen CSUEB turnovers and shooting 50 percent from the field in the second half allowed the Bears to narrow the gap again to just one point with 2:15 remaining. Whitfield was able to draw a foul and connect on two clutch free throws putting the Pioneers up 65-62 with 2:03 left in the game.
After a Pioneer defensive stop, Whitfield came through again late nailing a three-pointer and putting CSUEB up 68-62 securing the second win of the season. Whitfield has made the most three-point field goals in CSUEB history now tallying 140 in his career.
“Tonight, we made clutch free throws down the stretch and made big defensive stops,” CSUEB Head Coach Gus Argenal said. “Jacari Whitfield made big play after big play, and I was really pleased with his leadership.”
Fremont native Juawnn Springfield, a guard, was impressive for the Pioneers amassing 13 points, nine rebounds, and four assists in 34 minutes on the floor. Whitfield finished with 11 points and eight assists while freshman forward Patrick Marr totaled 10 points and five rebounds in just 17 minutes on the court.
CCAA play begins on Friday for the Pioneers in their first conference match as they go up against the visiting Cal Poly Pomona Broncos (3-2 overall, 0-1 conference).
Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. at Pioneer Gymnasium in Hayward.