“Gold Rush” night energizes crowd, key to men’s successful night

Hundreds of SF State students and fans waited in line, anxiously awaiting the free t-shirts and pizza for the first 500 attendees.

“Gold Rush” night, the first of its kind, packed The Swamp on Friday night for both the women’s and mens’s basketball game against the UC San Diego Tritons.

The men’s basketball team was able to end their four-game losing streak Friday night with a 65-56 win over the visiting Tritons. UCSD was able to take a lead midway through the first half. The Gators then went on to lead for the remainder of the game with the Tritons only pulling within two points with four minutes left in the first half.

SF State Gators player Floyd Wormley (#24) drives the ball past the defense of UC San Diego Triton player Hunter Walker (#23) during a game on Friday, Feb. 13, 2015.

[/media-credit] SF State Gators player Floyd Wormley (#24) drives the ball past the defense of UC San Diego Triton player Hunter Walker (#23) during a game on Friday, Feb. 13, 2015.

“We defended, and we really got out and challenged and shot the ball really well,” said Head Coach Paul Trevor. “We were able to get out there and challenge their shots real well, and offensively we were able to execute and we made some plays tonight.”

Junior guard Andre Jones, who scored a career-high 18 points, led the Gators on offense along with senior forward Udun Osakue who scored 17 points.

“It was mostly my teammates because most of the shots I got were an assist from someone else,” Jones said. “My teammates did a really good job of finding me and that’s what really helped me to get a career-high.”

The Gators fed off the crowd in the final five minutes of play, holding off a Triton run and were able to come away with the 65-56 win. This marks the Gators eighth win at home, and fifth home win in a row.

Before the men’s nine-point win, the Lady Gators fell to the Tritons after a contentious first half. The SF State women’s basketball team fell short with a 65-76 loss.

Led by a hot start from senior guard Michelle Sutton, SF State came out with energy and were able to keep pace with the Tritons for the first 20 minutes of play.

SF Gator Liz Wyrsch (40) shoots over UCSD Triton McKennan Bertsch (22) during the Gold Rush basketball game in the SFSU gymnasium on Friday, Feb 13, 2015.

[/media-credit] SF Gator Liz Wyrsch (40) shoots over UCSD Triton McKennan Bertsch (22) during the Gold Rush basketball game in the SFSU gymnasium on Friday, Feb 13, 2015.

“I told myself I was going to play hard and try to start the game off for my team so they could have a good game too,” Sutton said. “I was really focused and aggressive on the offensive end.”

Fatigue and lack of depth struck the Gators with about nine minutes left in the game that led to a dry spell on the offensive end. The Tritons took advantage and went on a 17-7 run, allowing them to put some cushion in between them and the Gators.

“We make a lot of shots when we we’re tired,” said sophomore guard Brittaney Allison. “We should have attacked the basket more and got to the line to catch our breath.”

Even though the Gators are now 0-21, coach Cox stayed positive and loved the effort put forth by his team.

“We’re just trying to compete right now,” Cox said. “The rest will take care of itself. And secretly I want it so much for them. They deserve it, so we’re going to keep fighting for it.”

Michelle Sutton and Brittaney Allison led the Gators with 17 and 16 points a piece.

The energy and fans helped the Gators come out strong, especially on the home court. For Trevor, this is exactly what keeps him going.

“The energy that is provided from the fans is what we’ve all wanted here at SF State,” Trevor said. “It’s outstanding and it makes me feel proud to be a Gator and part of the athletic program.”

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