DATE & TIME: Thursday, December 29th, 7:05 p.m. (pt).
FACTS & STATS: Site: Titan Gym (3,500) -- Fullerton, California. Television: None. Home Record: UCD 1-3, Fullerton 4-1. Away Record: UCD 0-6, Fullerton 3-1. Neutral Record: UCD 0-2, Fullerton 1-1. Conference Record: UCD 0-0, Fullerton 0-0. Series Record: Cal State Fullerton leads, 10-6.
GAME NOTES: The Aggies, who are closing out a five-game road trip tonight, have been abysmal so far this season with just one win in 12 opportunities, and that one came by a mere six points in a meeting with UC Santa Cruz (84-78) last month. Since then, Davis has fallen in eight straight outings, including a 62-51 setback versus Southern Utah last week.
Meanwhile, the Titans are enjoying one of their strongest starts in several years, their current five-game win streak the longest since the 2007-08 campaign. Since losing to Wichita State by 15 points in front of a crowd of more than 10,000 the first of the month, Cal State Fullerton has mostly dominated the competition, outside of a close 92-86 final versus Portland State last week at home in Titan Gym.
With respect to the all-time series between these two schools on the hardwood, the Titans hold a 10-6 edge over Davis, although Fullerton had dropped four in a row to the Aggies before securing an 87-82 win in the most recent matchup last season.
If the Aggies thought they had a tough time of it in the first half against Southern Utah when they made just 10 field goals, there's no way the team was prepared for the action after the break when then connected on a mere seven baskets and finished with only 51 points. Tyler Les was good for a team-best 12 points and J.T. Adenrele another 10, but the fact that UC Davis had more turnovers (22) than both made field goals and rebounds (21) is a shocking reality of where this team is now without an injured Ryan Sypkens, who has been on the shelf since the fifth game of the campaign. Sypkens scored a total of 50 point in his first three full games of the season, but instead of the Aggies having someone to rely on who was scoring about 17.0 ppg, they instead have Rosh Ritchart with his 11.7 ppg, followed by Les who is posting 10.3 ppg thanks to an efficient 42.9 percent shooting behind the three-point line to this point.
Fullerton allowed the Vikings to hit on 53.1 percent from the floor in their meeting last week, but still the Titans had enough gas left in the tank to secure the six-point home win. Kwame Vaughn scored a game-high 27 points and pulled down nine rebounds for the hosts, while D.J. Seeley posted 23 points, followed by Isiah Umipig and Omondi Amoke with 16 and 14 points, respectively, the latter also clearing a game-high 10 rebounds along the way as well. Of the projected starting five for the Titans, all but Orane Chin (9.6 ppg) is scoring in double figures after 11 games. Seeley, a transfer from Cal, is responsible for 15.5 ppg and 4.9 rpg, followed by Vaughn and Umipig with 14.7 and 14.6 ppg, respectively. Amoke (13.4 ppg) is another transfer from Cal who has been rock solid in the paint thus far with 8.6 rpg.
If Sypkens were available perhaps this would be a different UC Davis team, but for now the program is destined to struggle with such a weak offense.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Cal State Fullerton 81, UC Davis 63