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Fresno State's student-run newspaper

The Collegian

Fresno State's student-run newspaper

The Collegian

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‘Dogs start their season 1-0 after men’s basketball home opener

Bulldog+center+Enoch+Boakye+reaches+for+a+dunk+against+Fresno+Pacific+at+the+Save+Mart+Center+on+Nov.+6.+
Jacqueline Carrillo/The Collegian
Bulldog center Enoch Boakye reaches for a dunk against Fresno Pacific at the Save Mart Center on Nov. 6.

The Fresno State Men’s Basketball team kicked off the season at home with a 77-66 win over Fresno Pacific University. 

Before this game, the ‘Dogs had two scrimmages in preparation for the home opener. 

“This game showed some of the good things that we had in the scrimmages and some of the bad things we had in the scrimmages,” said Head Coach Justin Hutson. 

Opening the half, the ‘Dogs won the jump ball but could not get on the board. After the defensive stop, the Sunbirds got on the board with a layup to take a 2-0 lead. 

At the 16-minute mark, the Bulldogs were able to put up five points, but the Sunbirds continued their momentum offensively, connecting to the net to maintain the lead 13-7.

Shortly after, the ‘Dogs went on a 4-1 run but weren’t able to catch up. 

Both teams struggled to put up points during a 4-minute drought until Bulldog guard Issac Taveras went 2-for-2 on free throws, cutting the deficit.

Guard Xavier DuSell sits before he gets his name called for the starting lineup. (Jacqueline Carrillo/The Collegian)

The rhythm began to build up for the ‘Dogs as center Eduardo Andre followed with a slam dunk to tie the game 14-14. The Sunbirds responded by connecting on their own dunk to take back the lead.

Both teams continued putting up points in the paint but struggled to hold each other defensively. 

In the last minutes of the half, Fresno State found rhythm in the paint to close out 33-24. 

Coming into the second half, Andre set the tone with a layup to extend the lead. The Sunbirds followed and made a shot behind the arc,  but Andre answered back once again with an and-one, going up 38-27.

In a back-and-forth game, both teams maintained their aggression to keep putting up points.

At the 14-minute mark, the Sunbirds cut the deficit on a 7-2 run to get back in the game 48-42.   

Eduardo Andre dunks the ball from an alley-oop pass from Isaiah Hill watches. (Valentina Saldaña/The Collegian)

This didn’t stop the Bulldogs as guard Xavier DuSell connected from behind the arc to maintain the lead. 

DuSell was the top scorer for the ‘Dogs this game with 16 points, going 4-for-10 from the field, 4-for-7 from the arc and 4-for-4 on free throws.  

“I put a lot of work into my shot and I’m very confident in the work that I put in so when I see daylight, I only need a little bit of time and a little bit of space and, you know, I just shoot it and let the ball do the rest,” DuSell said. 

With just under 10 minutes left in the game, the Sunbirds bounced back, shortening the deficit to 56-50. 

Guard Ryan Abbott kept the Sunbird’s momentum going with a 3-point jumper, trailing by only 3 points. 

The Red Wave stood to their feet as an alley-oop pass from guard Isaiah Hill to Andre connected, putting them in a 5-point lead. 

Despite not being strong on defense, a big block by Andre gave the ‘Dogs the possession once again. 

The Bulldogs were able to seal the game with a 7-0 run that sealed the win, 77-66. 

The ‘Dogs start their season 1-0 and will travel to face off against Kent State on Nov. 11 at the Memorial Athletic and Convention Center. Tipoff is set for 4 p.m. 

Andre helps Jalen Weaver up after falling. (Jacqueline Carrillo/The Collegian)
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