Kirby helps Pacific beat Cal State Fullerton
STOCKTON, Calif. (AP)—Michael Kirby scored 14 points to lead Pacific to a 70-51 victory over Cal State Fullerton on Thursday night at Spanos Center.
Kirby, who made 4 of 6 shots from beyond the 3-point arc, had a 3-pointer and two free throws as Pacific began the second half with a 9-2 run that gave the Tigers their biggest lead at 22 points.
Sam Willard scored 13 points and had a game-high nine rebounds for Pacific (13-9, 6-5 Big West Conference). Terrell Smith and Chad Troyer each scored 9 points for the Tigers.
Marcio Lassiter scored 13 points to lead Cal State Fullerton (12-12, 6-6 Big West). Josh Akognon, the nation’s No. 8 scorer, had 11 points for the Titans.
Pacific led 56-37 with nine minutes remaining, but Fullerton State went on a 7-0 run over the next 70 seconds to creep within 12 points.
The Titans could get no closer, as Troyer and Willard each scored to begin a 10-3 run that put the Tigers back in command.
Pacific shot 53 percent from the field, had a 24-12 advantage in points in the paint and limited Fullerton to 36 percent shooting from the field in each half.
Pacific took control early as back-to-back 3-pointers by Lavar Neufville and Bryan LeDuc gave the Tigers a 21-10 lead midway through the first half.
Pacific followed moments later with an 11-0 run and twice stretched its lead to 18 points before settling for a 37-22 advantage at halftime.
The Tigers then scored the first seven points of the second half and built their lead to 22 points three times before Fullerton rallied to cut that lead nearly in half.