Fresno State senior guard Marvelle Harris battles with a defender during the Bulldogs’ exhibition game against Dominican University of California on Friday at Save Mart Center. (Darlene Wendels/The Collegian)
The Fresno State men’s basketball team defeated the Dominican University of California Penguins 77-55 with a strong second half defensive effort on Friday night at Save Mart Center.
Offensively the ‘Dogs were too strong for the Penguins on the inside, having their way with 18 points in the paint and 11 second-chance points in the first half.
With the length and athleticism of the ‘Dogs, the Penguins were forced to take many perimeter shots late into the shot clock.
In the first half, the Penguins shot 61 percent from the 3-point line, hitting 8-of-13 attempts.
“Dominican really drives and shoots the ball and they put a really good emphasis on our shooter and transition defense,” Fresno State head coach Rodney Terry said.
There was four lead changes in the first half as the Penguins battled strong with the Bulldogs.
Fresno State put together 14-5 run to battle back and take a 35-33 halftime lead.
In the second half, the ‘Dogs used their length and size to wear down the Penguins.
“We are a team that takes pride in guarding, finishing possessions with physical rebounds and then sprinting back,” Terry said.
The ‘Dogs clamped down on the Penguins, diminishing their field-goal percentage to just 24 percent and three-point percentage to just 23.
The ‘Dogs controlled the boards defensively with 17 defensive rebounds and limited the Penguins to just five offensive rebounds and only two second-chance points.
Torren Jones led the ‘Dogs in the rebound column with eight boards.
“I think the difference was definitely communication and us being involved in each play,” senior guard Cezar Guerrero said. “We are trying to be the best defensive team in the Mountain West. Coach Terry coaches communication a lot, being very vocal, communicating with each other and knowing our positions on the floor.”
The ‘Dogs finished with four players scoring in double digits with junior Karachi Edo leading the way with 14 points and seven rebounds.
Guerrero (13 points), Marvelle Harris (12 points) and Julien Lewis (11 points) were the other ‘Dogs to get into double digits.
“We are going to play a team that is going to be really explosive on the glass [next Friday versus Pepperdine], and they have guys that can shoot the basketball,” Terry said. “I thought this was a really good game that prepared us for that game.”