Riverside, Calif. – The Pacific men's basketball team picked up a 70-68 road win at UC Riverside on Saturday, March 2, 2013 in a Big West Conference game. With the win, Pacific improved to 17-12 on the season, 11-5 in league play. UC Riverside dropped to 6-23 overall and 3-13 in league action.
Junior Khalil Kelley and Senior Lorenzo McCloud each scored four points as the Tigers took a 14-8 lead with 14:28 to play in the half. A three-pointer from senior Colin Beatty extended Pacific's lead to 21-13 with 12:19 to go. Five straight points by the Highlanders cut the Tigers' lead to 21-18. Junior Trevin Harris then scored nine straight points in a 12-0 run as Pacific took a 35-20 lead with 5:53 left. UCR finished the half on an 18-6 run, including a 3/4 court shot by Robert Smith at the halftime buzzer to make it a 43-40 Tiger lead at the break. Each team was 14-26 (53.8%) from the field in the first 20 minutes.
The Tiger lead slipped to 43-42 after a basket by Chris Patton to open the second half. Five points from McCloud then sparked a 14-5 Pacific run that pushed the lead back to 10 (57-47). A basket from Junior Sama Taku gave the Tigers a 61-49 lead with 12:10 to play, but a 9-0 UCR run capped by a three-pointer from Smith made it 61-58 with 8:32 to go. Rivera and Beatty countered with baskets to push it back to seven (65-58) and four straight from junior Tony Gill and Beatty again made it 69-60 with just 4:30 to go. A 6-0 UCR stretch that spanned just under three minutes cut the lead to 69-66 with 1:48 remaining. After a miss on the offensive end, the Tigers held defensively on the other end. With only one team foul at the time, UCR fouled six times to get Pacific to the bonus. Junior Sama Taku missed the front end, and the Highlanders missed their first opportunity from three-point range, but Patton scored for UCR to make it 69-68 with just :11 seconds left. McCloud then went to the line for a one-and-one, making the front end but missing the second. UCR went for the win, but Smith's three-pointer was off the mark as Pacific held on for the victory.
McCloud (15), Taku (12), Fulton (11) and Beatty (10) all scored in double figures for the Tigers. Gill grabbed eight rebounds to lead the team. Patton had 28 points to lead UCR.
The Tigers shot 48.1% from the field, including 7-17 (41.2%) from three-point range. Pacific had 15 assists and just seven turnovers. The Tigers turned nine offensive rebounds into 12 second chance points.
Pacific is next in action with a home game against UC Irvine on Thursday, March 7 at 7:00 p.m.