December 29, 2010

Nemesis Tigers Next Foe

Dec. 29, 2010

Fullerton, Calif. -

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UPCOMING:
Thur., Dec. 30 -- Pacific, Titan Gym (4,000), 7:05 p.m.
Wed., Jan. 5 -- at UC Irvine, Bren Center (5,000), 7:05 p.m.
Sat., Jan. 8 -- at UC Riverside, Student Recreation Center (2,753), 7 p.m.

IN A NUTSHELL: The Titans (4-9, 0-1) have lost four out of their last five games including an 88-72 home loss to UC Davis in the Big West Conference opener Tuesday night. Second-half scoring outbursts by the opponents have become prevalent. Pacific is 8-5 and won its Big West opener at Cal State Northridge, 74-64, on Tuesday night.

AUDIO: Most Titan games can be heard live on the internet. Listeners may access the CSF Athletics home page at www.fullertontitans.com and follow the links. Mike Martinez is the usual play-by-play announcer.

VIDEO: ALL Titan home games can be viewed on computers via BigWest subscription TV.

POSSIBLE STARTING LINEUP:
No. Name Ht. Yr. ppg a/rpg Quick Notes
G 21 Perry Webster 6-1 Jr. 8.8 5.8a Leads Big West in assist-to-turnover ratio at 4.0 to 1; was second in nation
G 3 Devon Peltier * 5-11 Sr. 13.2 1.8r Career-high 24 points at USD and key final rebound; 6-for-25 last 3 games
F 15 Orane Chin * 6-7 Jr. 15.8 6.0r Scored career-high 32 points on 13-of-22 shooting at Portland State
F 0 Andre Hardy 6-6 Jr. 15.0 10.0 One rebound shy of second double-double in two-games
C 12 Jer'Vaughn Johnson * 6-6 Sr. 15.0 5.3r Has made 26 of 39 field goals in past four games; shooting 59 percent overall

OFF THE BENCH:
G 11 Roger Guardia 6-4 Sr. 2.9 2.4r Season-high 14 pts. vs. USD, made all four 3-point attempts; 1st start at UofA
G 13 Isiah Umipig 6-1 Fr. 6.4 1.5r Scored 13 of season-high 15 points in first half vs. Occidental
G 14 Orlando Brown 6-1 Jr. 4.2 3.6r Forced to front line by injuries; usually guards opponents' top scorer
G 32 Eric Williams * 6-3 Sr. 0.9 1.3r Walk-on played career-high 22 minutes at USD in first Div. I start
C 33 Sedric Martin 6-6 Jr. 4.1 1.7r Scored 13 points in first start of season at USC
F 45 Steve Jurich 6-7 Jr. 3.5 2.3r Got third start of season vs. Occidental
*letters earned

HOW YOU SAY IT: dee-VAHN pehl-tee-AY &\#149; Steve JUHR-itch &\#149; OHR-uhn Chin &\#149; Roger GWAHR-dee-uh &\#149; igh-ZAY-uh YOO-muh-pig

LAST GAME: The Titans never had the lead in Tuesday's loss to UC Davis. After trailing by 9 at the half, they twice pulled within a point only to see UC Davis go on a 9-0 run on the way to a 17-point lead. Fullerton came back to get within 5 points but the Aggies scored 13 unanswered points to pull safely ahead.

NO EXPERIENCE: With no two-years or more lettermen, the Titans field a roster that has a total of only nine seasons of Div. I experience (Johnson 3, Hardy 2, Chin 2, Williams 1 and Peltier 1) and only four of those are at Fullerton (Johnson, Chin, Williams and Peltier, 1 each). With Johnson and Hardy sidelined, the Titans took only eight healthy scholarship players to Oahu with a total of four seasons of Div. I experience.

THE COACH: Bob Burton is 127-101 in his eighth season at Cal State Fullerton and career. He has the most victories at the Div. I level and trails only Alex Omalev (139-176 in 12 years) all-time. Burton's winning percentage of .557 trails only Bobby Dye (.583, 109-78). He is 4-11 vs. Pacific with three of the victories coming in the 2006-07 season.

FRIENDLY CONFINES: Under Bob Burton, the Titans are 65-31 (.677) in Titan Gym including 35-4 (.897) in non-conference games. Fullerton had won its last 13 and 32 of the last 33 home non-conference games prior to the Dec. 22 loss to Montana. Fullerton's all-time Div. I Titan Gym record is 290-165 (.637). Fullerton also is 1-8 in regular season home games at the Anaheim Convention Center.

ROAD STRUGGLES: Under Bob Burton, the Titans have made dramatic strides as a road team. Despite a 1-7 record this season, they are 59-59 (.500) away from Titan Gym (includes 11-15 on neutral floors) from 2004-05 through the present. For the previous 10 seasons (1994-95 thru 2003-04) the combined road record was 30-115 (.207). With a 3-11 mark in his first season (2003-04), Burton's total CSF road record is 62-70 (.470).

SECOND-HALF WOES: Titan opponents are averaging 34 points in the first half and 41 in the second half. At USC (49), at Montana (52), at Portland State (51) and vs. UC Davis (52) have been the biggest explosions. Only twice (CSU Bakersfield - 46 and 29 on Nov. 27; USD 39 and 37 on Dec. 4) has an opponent scored fewer points in the second half than the first.

ABOUT THE TIGERS: Pacific is 8-5 and 1-0 after overcoming an 11-point first-half deficit at Cal State Northridge on Tuesday night. Center Sam Willard is the statistical leader at 16.6 ppg and 10.8 rpg. Demetrece Young is the only other double-digit scorer at 12.6 ppg. UoP is shooting only .429 from the floor but is holding opponents to .434.

SERIES HISTORY: Pacific leads the series, 44-35, including season sweeps in each of the last two seasons.

KEY STATISTIC: Fullerton has outrebounded its opponent five times this year and the first four occurrences coincided with a victory. The edge in boards was 39-34 in a 3-point win at San Diego, 43-20 in a 10-point home win over Cal State Bakersfield, 27-24 in a 90-76 win over USD and 24-21 in a 76-48 home win on Dec. 18 vs. Occidental. Fullerton outrebounded the much taller UC Davis Aggies on Tuesday, 36-33, but lost to superior 3-point shooting.

TITAN PLAYER THUMBNAILS:

Orlando Brown - playing time has diminished with returns of first Jer'Vaughn Johnson and now Andre Hardy... did not start for first time at Arizona... averaged 29 minutes over first six games vs. 11 minutes over last seven games with TOTAL of 8 points and 11 rebounds... twice has grabbed 9 boards in a game... usually guards opponents' top scoring threat... scored season-high 11 points vs. Cal State Bakersfield.

Orane Chin - scored career-high 32 points at Portland State on 13-of-22 shooting (4 of 7 treys)... made the Rainbow Classic all-tournament team, averaging 22.7 points and 6.0 rebounds over 3 games... had 12 rebounds vs. Central Michigan... has struggled against "twin towers," averaging 5 points (5-for-26 shooting) at USC (6-10 and 6-10) and vs. Montana (7-0 and 6-11) while averaging 19+ points against everyone else... played small forward last year and started there for first time this year vs. Oxy.

Roger Guardia - has emerged last seven games, averaging 16 minutes each night after only 29 minutes TOTAL in first six games... grabbed 9 rebounds at Montana and against USD had 14 points including 4-for-4 from 3-point line... had 2 points in first start at Arizona.

Andre Hardy - after a rusty first half, had a strong second half vs. Montana on Dec. 22 in first game action since March, 2009, in the NCAA Tournament for Oral Roberts... had 11 points and 8 rebounds after intermission to post only the third double-double (11 pts., 11 rebs.) by a Titan this season... almost did it again vs. UC Davis with team-high 19 points and 9 rebounds in a starting role.

Jer'Vaughn Johnson - only returning starter from last year... strained knee ligament in early practice session; released to practice again on Nov. 18 and played 13 minutes off the bench at USC on Nov. 24, scoring 3 points and grabbing 4 rebounds... had 17 points and 9 rebounds in 23 minutes vs. Bakersfield... in first two starts had 12 points and 4 rebounds in 24 minutes at Montana and career-high 23 points and 7 boards in 30 minutes in second win over USD... made all 7 shots and all 5 free throws in 19-point game at Portland State before fouling out with 1:16 to play... shot only .405 (17 for 42) vs. USC and Montana but .756 (34 for 45) against all others).

Steve Jurich - averaged 8 points and 2.5 rebounds in two starts in Hawai'i before back problem sidelined him... came off the bench at San Diego and played 21 minutes with 5 points and 5 rebounds... had season-high 7 rebounds at Montana... started again vs. Occidental.

Sedric Martin - got first start at USC and made 6-of-9 shots against the Trojans' twin 6-10 towers and scored 13 points... played about 12 minutes per game in Hawai'i, averaging 3.3 points and 2.0 rebounds... hit two free throws at 3:39 to tie Hawai'i game at 70-70.

Devon Peltier - in shooting slump... averaging only 6.7 points (9-for-31 FGs, 5-for-19 treys) over last four games after averaging 16 points over first 9 games... led the Titans with 15 points at USC and 20 at Montana and in between was most of the Titans' offense in the second half at San Diego, scoring 14 of his career and game-high 24 points... had 19 points in second USD win... led team with 19 at Arizona, making 4 of 6 treys... scored only in first 17 seconds and final 10 seconds vs. Montana on Dec. 22.

Isiah Umipig - freshman "saved the game" for the Titans per Coach Burton vs. Occidental... came off the bench to score 13 of his season-high 15 points before intermission including team's final seven of the period... hit game-tying trey vs. Central Michigan with 1:01 to play... averaged 10 points and 2.0 rebounds in Hawai'i... back-up point guard ended up at starting small forward vs. Montana State... started again at point vs. UC Davis but picked up two quick fouls and ended up scoreless.

Perry Webster - after scoreless game at USC came back for season-high 17 points vs. Cal State Bakersfield and matched that vs. Occidental... has had zero turnovers in four of the 13 games including second USD win when he had 10 assists... also had 10 assists in double-double with 10 points at Portland State... leads Big West in assist-to-turnover ratio at 4.0 to 1.0 (76 to 19)... began last week second in the nation at 4.33 to 1 to Washington State's Marcus Capers (only 29 assists and 5 turnovers)... scored only 5 points at San Diego but they turned a 58-55 deficit into a 60-58 lead on back-to-back possessions (2 free throws and a trey around his steal)... had 4 steals at USC.

Eric Williams - walk-on averaged 9 minutes per game in Hawai'i... got first career start at San Diego as Titans went "big," starting him (6-3) in place of 6-1 Umipig, who had started against Montana State... hit first trey of season vs. Occidental... started on Tuesday night vs. UC Davis.