RIVERSIDE, Calif. – Junior guard Mason Sawyer scored a career-high 23 points and DeQuan Thompson (Las Vegas, NV/Lake Mead Christian Academy) added 19 points, including a half-court shot at the final buzzer, as nationally ranked California Baptist held off a late charge from Dixie State for an 88-81 win Saturday night at Van Dyne Gymnasium.
After Dixie State opened the game on a 6-0 run and led 17-14 midway through the first half, the Lancers (6-1, 1-0 PacWest) went on a seven-point spurt to take their first lead. The teams traded the lead six more times before a pair of Thompson free throws cut CBU’s lead to 38-37 at the half.
Helped by a 4-0 opening run, the Storm gained a three-point lead, 41-38, early in the second half. The margin held until the 13:14 mark, when CBU made a big push. A 17-6 scoring run over three minutes included three of the six 3-pointers hit by the Lancers in the second half. The rally pushed the home team ahead by 10 points, 64-54, and gave the Lancers firm control of the game at that point.
The Red Storm would spend the final 10 minutes trying to string points together while holding off a Lancer offense that shot 50 percent from the field in the game. Four consecutive free throws from Robbins cut the lead to six, but that is as close as Dixie State would get. CBU would regain a double-digit advantage over the final minute, but Thompson’s heave from half court ripped the net as the horn went off to set the final differential at seven points.
Five players scored in double figures for the Lancers. Michael Smith led the way with 17 points off the bench.
Dixie State shot identical 40 percent (14-35) in each half, but struggled from behind the arc (3-11). Collectively, the Storm hit 88 percent from the charity stripe.
After a split of the opening weekend in PacWest play, Dixie State returns home next Saturday, Dec. 13, for a 3:30 p.m. matinee with Fresno Pacific.
Cal Baptist 69, Dixie State 57
Dixie State women’s basketball battled all night but came up short to Cal Baptist 69-57 on Saturday night.
The Red Storm (2-4, 1-1) had a tough shooting night, knocking down just 30 percent from the field and made just three triples of 25 attempts. Despite the cold game shooting and 27 turnovers, Dixie State fought back multiple times and were in the game until a late run by Cal Baptist (7-1, 1-0) put the game away.
“The girls never gave up and I have to commend the girls for another great effort,” head coach Jenny Thigpin said. “We need to do a better job of taking care of the ball and capitalizing on every possession. Overall it was a a good weekend on the road to go home with a split against two top conference teams.”
Brianna Jessop posted 14 points, three rebounds one block and one steal. Taylor Maynes set career highs with 15 rebounds and five steals to go along with her 4 points. Kaylah Miller added 14 points, but the 3-point specialist was off from deep, making just 2 of 17.
Midway through the first half and tied 16-16, CBU had a chance to take the lead but an offensive foul from the Lancers gave possession back to the Red Storm.
A layup from Miller on the other end gave DSU a two-point edge again.
Neither team got up by more than four points in the first half and there were eight lead changes. Miller led at the break with nine points while Moore added seven.
The Lancers took quick lead in the second half but Dixie State trimmed it back to just 39-38 in the opening minutes. CBU got hot however, and put together a 14-2 run to take control at 53-40 near the 10-minute mark.
The Red Storm battled back with a 13-3 run and cut the 13-point deficit down to 56-53 with 6:11 to go.
An 8-0 run by Cal Baptist over the next three minutes doomed the Storm though as Dixie State couldn’t spark another comeback and fell 69-57.
DSU returns home to host Fresno Pacific on Dec. 13 at 1 p.m. MT in the Burns Arena.
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