Cal State Long Beach 98, Utah State 92--Morlon Wiley scored 37 points for the 49ers, and that surprised even him.
Never had he amassed such a total. “Not even in recreation league,” Wiley said after he led the 49ers to an overtime victory at the 49er gym.
Wiley, a sophomore guard, had been averaging 10.3 points a game.
“That was the best performance I’ve had from a player since I’ve been coaching,” Long Beach Coach Ron Palmer said.
Only Ed Ratleff, now a 49er assistant coach, has scored more points in a game for Long Beach. Ratleff had games of 39 and 45 points in the 1971-72 season.
Wiley also had seven rebounds and five steals as the 49ers won for only the seventh time in 28 games. Long Beach is 3-14 and in last place in the PCAA.
Utah State (11-15 and 7-10) had an 84-80 lead late in regulation, but Wiley made a layup after stealing the ball, then hit a short jumper in the lane to send the game into overtime.
Wiley made 6 of 6 free throws in overtime, and freshman John Hatten, who had his season-high with 16 points, scored the first five points of the extra period to give the 49ers a lead (89-86) that they didn’t give up.
Greg Grant scored 20 points for Utah State and became the PCAA’s all-time leading scorer. His first point of the game broke the record of 2,065 held by Ron Cornelius, who played for Pacific in 1977-81.