Santa Clara at Cal State Bakersfield
Game Time: 7:00 p.m. PST
Team Records: SCU – 2-4 – CSUB – 5-3
Leading Scorers: SCU – Clark 19.0 – CSUB – Grayson 12.1
Clark 19.0 – CSUB – Grayson 12.1
Leading Distributors: SCU – Roquemore 4.7 – CSUB – Grayson 4.5
Cal State Bakersfield
The struggling Santa Clara Broncos will look to regroup with a victory versus Cal State Bakersfield.
Despite the beginnings of breakout seasons from Brandon Clark and Jared Brownridge, Santa Clara has struggled to put W’s in the win column. Point guard Evan Roquemore has just recently returned from a lower-back injury, and still does not look completely 100% nor does he look 100% acclimated with the offense. The Broncos are struggling to put the ball through the basket this season at an efficient rate; Santa Clara is last in the West Coast Conference in field goal percentage with 43.5 percent.
These two setbacks are a good reason why the Broncos are struggling, and they will need to do their best in fixing them in order to get to .500. Unfortunately for Santa Clara, the Broncos have a formidable foe in Cal State Bakersfield.
AP Poll: NR
Coaches Poll: NR
The Roadrunners have lived up to expectations for the most part as the 3rd place team in the WAC preseason coaches and media poll’s. Cal State Bakersfield comes into this game with a 5-3 record, with wins versus UC Mecred (NAIA), Sacramento State, Nevada, Idaho State and Northern Arizona. The Roadrunners losses are against Washington State, Fresno State and Drake, all of which are quality teams.
CSUB has a fairly balanced offensive attack, with Issiah Grayson being the only one averaging double-digit points with 12.1. Grayson is also the Roadrunners leading distributor with 4.5 assists per game. From a statistical standpoint, he is Cal State Bakersfield’s offensive heart and soul.
Stefon Johnson, Brandon Barnes and Abdul Ahmed are the Roadrunners best rebounders; the three players are averaging 5.4, 4.8 and 4.0 rebounds this season.
Cal State Bakersfield is not a team who is going to light up the scoreboard. The Roadrunners 72.0 points per game is 213th in the NCAA, and they only average 67.9 possessions per game, which is ranked 252nd in the NCAA.
Keys to the Game
In the Broncos last 4 games (all losses), the Broncos have been giving up 82.0 points per game. With Cal State Bakersfield’s slow pace of play, Santa Clara cannot keep up with the Roadrunners if they give up 82 points. The Broncos will need to buckle down on the defensive end and get stops in order to gain an upper-hand on its opponent.
Hit the Three
Santa Clara had a miserable time shooting from behind the arc in its last game against Rice. The Broncos shot 26.1 percent (6 of 21) from downtown, a concerning statistic for a team that likes to chuck up the deep ball. Santa Clara needs to hit its three-pointers when open, or they will lose.