LA JOLLA, Calif. – The California men’s basketball team failed to stage a second-half rally and lost a non-conference road game 64-62 to UC San Diego on Tuesday night at LionTree Arena.
After facing a 10-point halftime deficit, Cal (0-3) made a late push for the second game in a row but could never take the lead in the streak. Guess wrong finished with a team record 13 points while Grant Newell (12), Kuany Kuany (11) and Lars Thiemann (10) added double-digit scoring efforts.
A 3-pointer from UCSD’s Bryce Pope — his fifth of the night — with 12 seconds left gave the Tritons (1-2) a 64-60 lead. After a UCSD timeout, Askew converted a layup to cut the deficit to two. The Golden Bears called timeout and fouled Jace Roquemore, who missed the start of a 1-and-1. Askew grabbed the rebound and managed to throw in a 3-point attempt, but missed the mark.
The Tritons shot 7-for-13 from 3-point range in the first half and led up to 18 points, 28-10, with 7:07 remaining before intermission. Cal managed to score the final six points – all free throws – of the opening period to go 37-27 at halftime, but only managed six field goals (6 for 19, 31.6%) from the ground. Kuany scored nine of his 11 points while Newell added eight before halftime.
Consecutive layups by Joel Brown with 2:14 to go and 58 seconds to go, Cal brought Cal within a point both times, 59-58 and 61-60.
Cal finished 21 of 24 at the charity strip, knocking down his most free throws in a single game since going 26 of 33 against Utah on Feb. 29, 2020. Newell was a perfect 6 of 6 and was one of three Bears who made six free throws, along with Kuany and Thiemann.
Pope led UCSD with 19 points while Emmanuel Tshimanga scored 12 of 5-for-6 shooting off the bench and Roquemore scored 11.
Cal will be back in action on Friday when they host Southern University at Berkeley. The contest will begin at 6:00 p.m. PT and will be televised on the Pac-12 Network.
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