Cool CS Fullerton Patiently Rolls Past Utah State, 91-71

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The Cal State Fullerton Titans pride themselves on playing annoying basketball. They poke, they prod, they swat and cajole.

Then, during a 91-71 Big West Conference victory over Utah State before 1,850 in Titan Gym on Saturday night, they reached the free-throw line and suddenly became the calmest, coolest guys in the building.

The Titans (7-4, 2-2) beat Utah State (5-5, 2-1) by making their first 18 free throws, delivered the knockout punch by holding the Aggies to one field goal in the first 11:37 of the second half and, suddenly, their three consecutive losses to nationally ranked teams don’t sting quite as much.


“I told our team after the game, I was excited watching them,” said Fullerton Coach Brad Holland, who called it the Titans’ best all-around game of the season. “I wanted to get a uniform and join them.”

The Aggies arrived at Fullerton tied with New Mexico State for first place in the conference, and the Titans fixed that in a hurry.

By the end of the evening, Fullerton forward Kim Kemp simply laughed.

“No more,” said Kemp, who equaled his career-high of 14 rebounds before fouling out late in the second half.

Forward Bruce Bowen, who made all seven of his first-half shots, finished with a game-high 25 points and center Sean Williams added 17.

The Titans dominated, shooting 50.9% from the field to Utah State’s 40.3%, outrebounding the Aggies, 35-25, and forcing 17 turnovers--including 10 Titan steals.

And then there was point guard Aaron Sunderland, who held Jay Goodman, Utah State’s leading scorer, to 13 points--four under his average--and yielded only three three-pointers, two of which came in the game’s waning moments.


“Goodman really makes them tick, and Aaron did a good job of harassing him,” Holland said.