Santa Barbara Beats Undermanned Fullerton

Things haven't been going well for Cal State Fullerton lately, and they didn't change for the better Saturday night against UC Santa Barbara.

The Titans lost their eighth Big West game in their last nine, 80-69, this time with center Winston Peterson out with an injured little finger on his left hand.

Peterson, the Titans' leading scorer with a 17-point average, did not suit up. He said he injured the finger against Long Beach State on Thursday night.

"I couldn't bend the finger, and it's swollen," Peterson said after the game.

"He told me before the game he was in too much pain to play," Fullerton Coach Bob Hawking said, "and I couldn't ask him to play if that's the case."

Santa Barbara, 13-11 and 8-8 in the Big West, ended a streak of five defeats against the Titans, including two in a row in the Thunderdome. Fullerton (7-18, 5-12) remained one victory short of the eight it managed last season.

Hawking said he was pleased with the effort his team made despite being down to eight players because of injuries.

"The kids competed well," Hawking said, "but we just weren't shooting well enough. Their size certainly was a factor in the game. We had to play with four guards in the game quite a bit of the time."

The Titans shot only 37.7% compared to 48.4% for Santa Barbara, which took advantage of the Titans' lack of size inside. Mark Flick scored 18 points and Doug Muse had 15 for the Gauchos.

Chuck Overton scored 19, Dave Harrison 18 and Danny Robinson 17 for the Titans. It was Robinson's career high.

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