Cal State Fullerton (13-13) at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (4-20)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 23, 2 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: American Bank Center (8,000) -- Corpus Christi, Texas. Television: None. Home Record: CSF 6-5, TX A&M-CC 2-8. Away Record: CSF 5-8, TX A&M-CC 2-12. Neutral Record: CSF 2-0, TX A&M-CC 0-0. Conference Record: CSF 6-8, TX A&M-CC 3-11. Series Record: Texas A&M-Corpus Christi leads, 1-0.
GAME NOTES: The annual BracketBuster event has set up a non-conference bout between the Cal State Fullerton Titans and the Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Islanders at the American Bank Center for Saturday.
Corpus Christi won the only previous meeting between these schools, 83-76, on Nov. 22, 2002.
Fullerton climbed back to the .500 mark on Wednesday with a 77-60 rout of Cal Poly at home behind a 23-point and seven-assist performance by Kwame Vaughn. The win came after the Titans lost their previous two games and seven of their last nine to ruin a promising start to the 2012-13 campaign. Vaughn is the second leading scorer for Fullerton despite netting a respectable average of 17.8 ppg on 45.1 percent shooting from the field. D.J. Seeley is just ahead of him in the scoring column with 18.3 ppg, but they both deal out four assists per tilt.
The Titans found their shooting touch in the win over the Mustangs as they connected on 56 percent of their field-goal tries and assisted half of their 28 makes from the floor. Meanwhile, Fullerton limited Cal Poly to 39 percent field goal efficiency in the contest. The game was decided in the opening 20 minutes as Fullerton outshot Cal Poly from the field in the first half, 55.2 percent to 33.3 percent, as it took a comfortable 40-23 lead into the intermission. Sammy Yeager (15.8 ppg) and Alex Harris (9.3 ppg, 1.7 spg) have both made solid contributions on the offensive end to help the Titans net a Big West leading average of 80.3 ppg, which is also the fourth highest mark nationally. Fullerton is nowhere near as adept on the defensive end, where it allows 76.4 ppg, which is the most among Big West schools.
The Islanders continued to struggle on Tuesday as they fell, 82-71, to Northwestern State. The loss dropped them to a 4-20 overall record that includes a 3-11 mark versus Southland Conference foes. Junior forward Will Nelson is producing team-leading averages of 12.9 points and 7.2 rebounds per tilt while 5-foot-10 sophomore guard Johnathan Jordan is right behind him in both categories with 12.8 points and 5.0 boards a game. Jordan is one of just five players in the nation averaging 10-plus points, five-plus rebounds and five-plus assists on the year.
The tandem has managed to help Corpus Christi to only 60.1 ppg on the offensive end, which is the second lowest mark among Southland Conference programs. The Islanders allow 68.6 ppg on the defensive end.Corpus Christi's bench has stepped up its play amid the mediocrity lately to add 30.2 ppg over the last four games. The Islanders set a season-high with 46 points in the paint in their loss to Northwestern State, but they were still handed a double-digit loss after the Demons outscored them 22-13 at the charity stripe and 24-12 from beyond the arc.
Fullerton's trio of scorers will be too much more the Islanders to handle in this one. The homecourt advantage will quickly disappear as the Titans pull away early with their offensive supremacy.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Cal State Fullerton 75, Texas A&M-CC 59
02/23 10:37:40 ET