SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – Tre' Coggins led a trio of Titans in double figures as the Cal State Fullerton men's basketball team survived a last-second attempt by Cal Poly to hold on for the 78-77 victory at Mott Athletics Center on Thursday night.
With the win, Fullerton (10-17, 3-11 BWC) snapped a five-game slide and won its first road game since Jan. 7, although the Titans remain in last place (ninth) in the Big West Conference standings with two games to play. The Mustangs fall to 10-17 overall and 4-10 in league play as the teams split the season series.
Coggins led the Titans with an 18-point effort knocking down four three-pointers and helping the Titans to a season-best shooting night from the floor at 54.7 percent (29-of-53) and three-point range (.533; 8-of-15).
Freshman Khalil Ahmad poured in 16 points, while Malcolm Brooks added 15. Sophomore forward Jamar Akoh scored eight points and led the Titans with eight rebounds and a game and career-high seven assists.
Fullerton trailed 67-62 with just over six minutes to play before making its final push as Coggins and Kyle Allman drained back-to-back buckets to bring the game to its ninth tie score of the night.
Another Coggins' three-pointer gave Fullerton its final lead, 71-68, with 3:01 to play, and two Brooks' free throws expanded the Titan advantage to 76-71 with 57 seconds left on the clock. Cal Poly missed the mark on three consecutive possessions, but stayed in the game thanks to a Morgan Reese basket from long distance after the Titans shot 0-of-3 from the free-throw line.
With 10 seconds to go, Coggins pushed CSF's lead back to 78-74 with two makes from the charity stripe, but once again Fullerton fell victim to the trey as Jaylen Shead pulled Cal Poly within 78-77 with four seconds remaining.
A Titan turnover on an offensive foul gave the ball back to Cal Poly, but Joel Awich's inside shot missed at the buzzer.
Cal Poly was led by Reese's game-high 22 points on 7-of-14 shooting which included six three-pointers. David Nwaba added 12 points and Awich scored 10.
Fullerton trailed 37-35 at the half but opened the second period on a 13-7 run.
The Titans return to action hosting UC Santa Barbara on Saturday, Feb. 27 with the game broadcast on ESPN3. Fullerton will play its regular season finale and honor its senior class against Long Beach State on Wednesday.
Notes: The Titans set season high in shooting percentage (.547) and three-point shooting percentage (.533)…Jamar Akoh's seven assists not only set a career high but were the most for any Titan this year…all nine players scored in the game…CSF snapped a five-game losing streak…the Titans won their first road game since Jan. 7.