SF State men's basketball ends six-game losing streak, defeats UC San Diego

The SF State men’s basketball team scored six unanswered points to start the game and led the game all night against the

SFSU men's basketball

SF State's Nefi Perdomo, #13 (left), attempts a layup during the game against UC San Diego on Sat. Jan. 28, 2012. The Gators won with a final score of 56-45. Photo by Hang Cheng.

visiting UC San Diego Tritons, winning 56-45 Saturday.

Saturday’s victory broke the Gators’ six-game losing streak, all of which were losses against California Collegiate Athletic Association opponents.

“We’ve been in every game. The last six games we’ve been either in the lead or within one point at halftime it feels like and we just hit a rut,” said SF State head coach Paul Trevor.

The Gators benefited from a solid defensive performance, out-rebounding UC San Diego (7-12, 3-11 CCAA) 45 to 38. Center Max Fodor, sophomore, was vital on both sides of the ball. Fodor finished the game with a double-double as he collected 11 rebounds and 14 points.

“Max (Fodor) is continually getting better and better and better,” Trevor said. “He’s really stepping his game up.”

The Tritons attacked from the outside with plenty of three-pointers. However, they only converted 10 percent, 2 of 20, of those tries. The Gators’ Nefi Perdomo, junior, challenged almost every one of those shots.

Perdomo and Fodor were crucial in the Gators’ win. Perdomo’s offensive effort led the team with 19 points and four assists. Defensively, he collected six rebounds and two steals.

SF State had a balanced attack, shooting from every spot of the Tritons defensive half. The Gators took 14 three-pointers, converting two, but also drove into the paint, taking 33 free throws.

“I thought I played well, but I couldn’t have done it without my team,” said Fodor. “If you noticed it wasn’t an individual game, it was everybody passing, making each other better.”

The Gators led 28-18 at halftime, but the intensity picked up in the second half as the Tritons played with more urgency.

UC San Diego started the second half with an unanswered 9-point run, cutting the SF State lead to 28-27. However, the Gators regrouped, and widened their lead to 30-27 after Perdomo scored two points on back-to-back trips to the free throw line.

“I just wanted to let the game come to me. I wasn’t going to force anything, I was just waiting for it to happen,” said Perdomo.

The Gators then got into better offensive rhythm, passing the ball and creating different plays as they drove to the basket when lanes opened.

UC San Diego was able to slow down Perdomo to just six points in the first half, but the 6-foot, 1-inch guard took over the game in the second half.  He scored 13 of his 19 points in the second part of the game, sinking 11 of 14 free throws.

“Nefi (Perdomo) played great,” Trevor said. “He was a great teammate tonight; he shared the ball, he led and he didn’t force shots.”

After his 19-point performance, Perdomo moves to ninth place on SF State’s all-time scoring list with a career total of 1,033.

SF State ended the night scoring 37 percent of its field goals, 14 percent from the three-point range and 66 percent from the free-throw line.

UC San Diego sophomore James McCann, guard, led the Tritons with 14 points and three assists. He was also perfect from the free-throw line, scoring all five of his shots.

Despite McCann’s performance, the Tritons only made 25 percent of their field goal attempts, 14 of 56.

SF State (5-15, 3-11 CCAA) visits Cal State Stanislaus (11-7, 7-7 CCAA) Friday, Feb. 3 in Turlock, Calif.