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Though close at times, Colorado State led from start to finish and earned a 90-79 victory over San Jose State at Moby Arena, Feb. 10. Snapping a seven-game losing streak, the Rams improved to 11-16 overall and 4-10 in Mountain West action, while the Spartans fell to 3-20 and 0-12 in the league.
CSU scored the first four points of the game and opened on a 12-5 run over the first four minutes of the contest. The Rams stretched the margin to a 10-point lead at 27-17 with 9:36, but the Spartans trimmed it down to two on two separate occasions in the opening 20 minutes. However, the hosts had an answer on all three occasions, led by 20 bench points, as the Rams connected on three pointers on the first two before scoring the final four points of the half to go into the break with a six-point lead, 46-40.
San Jose State got it down to a one-point lead at 48-47 to start the half, but a quick 7-0 run pushed the advantage back to eight with 15:47 to play. The lead shrunk again to one in three more situations, with the final one at 60-59 with just under 11 minutes remaining. However, CSU went on an 11-0 run over a 1:07 span to take a 71-59 lead, one that eventually grew to as many as 17 in the closing minutes before getting the 11-point win.
Colorado State was 50.7 percent (35-of-69) from the floor and 33.3 percent (11-of-33) from the three-point line. San Jose State finished at 42.9 percent (27-of-63) on field goal attempts and 36.0 percent (9-of-25) on threes, though the visitors were limited to just 39.4 percent (13-of-33) from the field in the second half. The Spartans were 16-of-22 CSU won the battle of the boards 42-36 and forced 12 SJSU turnovers while giving it up just seven times.
CSU was led by redshirt-sophomore center Nico Carvacho with a career-high 26 points on 11-of-14 field goals and tying a career best with 20 rebounds. Redshirt-sophomore Anthony Bonner guard added 19 point on 7-of-10 field goals and 5-of-8 three pointers. Redshirt-sophomore guard Raquan Mitchell and junior guard Prentiss Nixon chipped in 11 and 10 points, respectively. San Jose State was led by Keith Fisher’s 23 points, while Ryan Welage and Noah Baumann each tallied 16.
CSU has won all 17 games in the series with San Jose State, including all eight at Moby Arena. Jase Herl took over as interim head coach for today’s victory. Since injuring his ankle against Air Force Jan. 17, Prentiss Nixon recorded his first double figures in scoring. Carvacho’s double-double was his ninth of the season (11th of his career) for the center and his 11th consecutive game with 10 or more rebounds. The Rams’ bench contributed 30 points on the day, just the third time this season the bench has tallied 30 or more points. Redshirt-sophomore Juan Sabino II recorded his first collegiate points in the game, hitting a jumper in the final minute of the contest.
Next up, Colorado State is taking their first bye of the season and will be back in action on Sat., Feb. 17 at 5 pm MT at Fresno State. The contest between the Rams and Bulldogs will be televised on ESPN3 / WatchESPN.com. The game will air across the Colorado State Sports Network (along with online at CSURams.com), with Brian Roth and Adam Nigon on the call. CSU Sports Network broadcasts can be also accessed on mobile devices through the Tune In app (free app – available on all Apple, Android, Windows, Blackberry and Amazon Kindle devices) – once app has downloaded, then search “Colorado St. Rams Sports Network” in the app for the games and coaches’ show broadcasts.