Men's College Basketball
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Cal State Northridge (1-1) at Fresno State (1-1)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, November 16, 10 p.m. (et)

FACTS & STATS: Site: Save Mart Center (14,544) -- Fresno, California. Television: None. Home Record: CSUN 1-0, FSU 0-0. Away Record: CSUN 0-1, FSU 1-1. Neutral Record: CSUN 0-0, FSU 0-0. Conference Record: CSUN 0-0, FSU 0-0. Series Record: Fresno State leads, 26-5.

GAME NOTES: The Fresno State Bulldogs play their home opener on Saturday night, as they entertain the Cal State Northridge Matadors at Save Mart Center.

After registering a home win in its opener against Hope International last Friday, 86-74, CSUN traveled to USC on Tuesday night and suffered a 95-79 setback to fall to 1-1. The Matadors are in the midst of a six-game run away from Northridge, as they will partake in next weekend's Central Michigan Tournament before finally returning home on Dec. 1.

Fresno State opened with a pair of difficult road tilts, having escaped with a 1-1 record. The Bulldogs battled with Big West Conference-favorite UC Irvine in the opener and outlasted the Anteaters in overtime, 98-97, but their luck wasn't as good on their cross-country trek to Pittsburgh on Tuesday, losing to the Panthers in a 75-54 final.

Fresno State beat CSUN in February of 2012 in Northridge, 62-49, to improve to 26-5 in the all-time series.

The Matadors played poorly at both ends of the court in their recent loss to USC, as they shot just 33.3 percent from the floor, including 22.7 percent from 3-point range, while allowing the Trojans to net field goals better than 57 percent of the time. Josh Greene was the game's leading scorer with 19 points, but he was only 4-of-15 from the field. Stephen Maxwell logged a double-double with 17 points and 12 rebounds, while Tre Hale-Edmerson narrowly missed one with 11 points and nine boards. Aaron Parks was ice-cold off the bench (2-of-9), but converted 7-of-9 at the free-throw line to finish with 11 points. CSUN's peculiar start to the season has the team averaging 82.5 points per game, despite shooting less than 39 percent from the floor. An active effort from the foul line (35 attempts per game at 85.7 percent efficiency) has saved the club. Maxwell (20.0 ppg, 12.0 rpg) has made his mark in the paint, while Greene (17.5 ppg), Stephan Hicks (14.5 ppg) and Hale-Edmerson (11.0 ppg) are also playing well.

After such an draining overtime win in its first game, Fresno State was predictably sluggish in its road loss to Pittsburgh, shooting 37.3 percent from the field (6-of-23 from beyond the arc) and committing 15 turnovers. Paul Watson was one of the few bright spots in the 21-point defeat, as he shot 8- of-12 from the floor for 18 points to go with five rebounds. Cezar Guerrero was the only other player in double figures with 10 points and also handed out seven assists. With two games under their belt, each on opposite ends of the performance spectrum, the Bulldogs are averaging 76.0 points per game on 45.2 percent field goal efficiency. Watson has netted 18 points in both games and is shooting just shy of 60 percent from the floor. Marvelle Harris (17.5 ppg) is hot on Watson's heels for the scoring lead, while Guerrero (16.5 ppg, 4.0 apg) is a strong perimeter defender with five steals. Tyler Johnson mans the frontcourt and contributes across the board with 9.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 5.5 assists per game.

Fresno State deserves a pass for its performance at Pitt earlier in the week, and while fatigue may again be a factor returning home from the Eastern Time Zone, the Bulldogs should get a bolt of energy from the sold-out crowd.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Fresno State 80, Cal State Northridge 71

11/16 10:41:47 ET

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