Tigers Open 2011-12 Exhibition Slate With 66-63 Win Over Cal State East Bay

Khalil Kelley (photo by Gary Jones)
Khalil Kelley (photo by Gary Jones)

The Pacific men's basketball team opened the 2011-12 exhibition season with a 66-63 win over Cal State East Bay on Saturday, Nov. 5.

After the Pioneers scored to open the game, junior center Khalil Kelley started the scoring for Pacific, getting the Tigers on the board with a jumper from the paint. Junior guard Colin Beattyimmediately followed, draining a three from behind the arc to give the Tigers a 5-2 lead. Kelley capped off a 7-0 for Pacific with a layup and scored six of Pacific's first 11 points. Several players contributed within the opening minutes of the first half, with five different players scoring to give the Tigers a 17-12 lead after nine minutes of play. The Pioneers went on an 8-0 run to tie the game at 17-17 with 10:39 remaining in the half. Pacific pushed the lead back up to seven (30-23) with 7:00 to go and held a 38-33 lead at the break.

Junior forward Travis Fulton scored the first basket for Pacific in the second half to put the Tigers up 40-35. After a 7-2 run, Cal State East Bay tied the game at 40-40 and took the lead on a jumper by Mark Samuels. The lead changed five times in the second half, with the Tigers falling behind by as many as seven points with 8:59 remaining in the game. Pacific cut the Pioneer lead to one point after a 7-2 run, highlighted by two jumpers and a free throw by Fulton. Pacific was within one after a layup from junior guard Lorenzo McCloud and tied the game at 59-59 with a successful free-throw from sophomore guard Andrew Bock. Cal State East Bay tied the game two more times before Bock sank another free-throw with :44 seconds left on the clock to give Pacific a 64-63 advantage. McCloud sank two more from the line of the night to give Pacific a three point lead with :15 seconds left and held on the defensive side to earn the win.

With a nearly new team on the bench for Pacific, 15 of the 16 Tigers saw time on the floor and 13 players found the bottom of the net. Pacific shot 39.9% from the field and excelled in the paint, scoring 28 points in the key, but struggled at the free throw line. The Tigers scored only two of eight attempts in the first half and missed all seven attempts in the second half to finish the game 13.3% from the line.

Kelley led the Tigers with 16 points, while McCloud added 11 points. Fulton had a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Samuels led Cal State East Bay with 30 points.

The Tigers are back in action on Wednesday, November 9 against San Francisco State University in their final exhibition game of the preseason. Tipoff is at 7:00 pm at Alex G. Spanos Center.