In a tightly contested game, San Diego kept their 3 game winning streak alive, beating the Dons 77-69 on Saturday, January 31, 2015 inside the Jenny Craig Pavillion in San Diego. This is the first time since the 2008-2009 season that Toreros have won both games in conference play against the Dons.
Dec 3, 2014; Boulder, CO, USA; San Francisco Dons forward/center Kruize Pinkins (15) shoots over Colorado Buffaloes forward Wesley Gordon (1) in the second half at the Coors Events Center. The Buffaloes defeated the Dons 72-55. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Many of the Dons from California based families were playing in front of family and friends in San Diego, making this a quasi-home game for them. A run of turnovers in the last 5:15 of the game combined with poor free throw shooting doomed the Dons at the end. The free throw shooting issue gets shored up then resurfaces at inopportune times. This game was one of them.
The win for San Diego improves their conference record to 5-6; the Dons tumble to 3-8.
USF was effective in the first half derailing the Johnny Dee three. They closed out the half leading by 1 point 38-37. USD started the game with great energy and a blistering pace climbing to a 9 point lead at the 15:38 point. Simi Fujimisin and Duda Sanadze were effective scoring weapons against the Dons while Tim Derksen, Devin Watson and Matt Christianson amped it up against the Toreros. Sanadze who finished with 11 points had a solid game after having to dealt with injuries most of the season so far.
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Freshman Vasa Pusica matched his career high of 16 points again in this game, another potent scoring weapon for USD who have gone from the worst shooting team in the WCC to one of the best. Johnny Dee was USD’s top scorer with 20 points. He also had 1 blocked shot, 4 steals and 4 rebounds, making him the team’s complete player. If there was an all around award for the game, Dee would be the winner. Chris Anderson led the team with 5 assists.
Kruize Pinkins led the Dons in scoring followed by Matt Glover who finished with 13 points and 4 rebounds. Tim Derksen had 10 points and 3 rebounds. Matt Christianson was crucial with his physical presence which doesn’t always translate to stats. He fouled out with 7:54 left in the game giving Chase Foster some more minutes on the floor after rotating in and out to cover Chris Adams and Matt Glover. Mark Tollefsen had a very quiet night with only 8 points and 2 rebounds.
The Dons will return home where they will play 6 of their remaining 7 games before the WCC tournament in Las Vegas. They face Portland on Thursday, February 5, 2015. San Diego will play Loyola Marymount in LA on Thursday.