In the third sellout of the season, the CSU Bakersfield men’s basketball team defeated Utah Valley University 68-65 on Saturday, Jan. 21 in the Icardo Center.
According to CSUB, the official attendance was 3,497.
CSUB (12-7, 3-1 WAC) improved to 8-0 at home on the season.
Utah Valley (9-10, 1-3 WAC) came into the game averaging over 80 points per game this season. The Roadrunners used swarming defense and strong rebounding to smother the UVU offense.
“If they get going, it doesn’t matter who they’re playing, they’re going to make shots. Our defense came through for us in the second half,” said CSUB coach Rod Barnes.
CSUB outrebounded the Wolverines by a margin of 37-30. They also limited the Wolverines to only 28 percent on three-point shooting.
Redshirt-senior forward Matt Smith was the catalyst on the defensive end after an underwhelming performance on the road at New Mexico State University on Saturday, Jan. 14.
“Matt is our energy bunny, we just got outworked by New Mexico State and coach was on him all week in practice. He responded tonight,” said redshirt-senior forward Jaylin Airington.
Smith recorded 10 points and six rebounds on the evening.
The Roadrunners used a balanced attack to secure the victory with four players scoring in double figures. Senior guard Dedrick Basile led CSUB with 13 points.
Airington grabbed a team-high seven rebounds, while redshirt-junior guard Brent Wrapp handed out a team high six assists.
The Roadrunners led for all of 18 seconds in the game, however UVU would not go away. CSUB’s largest lead was only 8 points.
“We’ve taken some tough losses early on, so I think we’re better prepared to handle the pressure of league play,” said Barnes.
Up next for the Roadrunners is a three-game road trip. On Thursday, Jan. 26, they will take on Chicago State University on Thursday, Jan. 26 at 5 p.m., followed by a matchup against University of Missouri-Kansas City on Saturday, Jan. 28 at 5 p.m. On Saturday, Feb. 4, they will travel to Phoenix, Arizona to take on Grand Canyon University at 6 p.m.
CSUB is scheduled to return to the Icardo Center on Thursday, Feb. 9 against New Mexico State at 7 p.m. New Mexico State handed the Roadrunners its last home loss in a 68-67 double-overtime loss last season.