The ‘Bows struggled with consistency — and Fresno State’s full-court press — in a 79-64 loss in the Wooden Legacy.
The Bulldogs’ press impeded the ‘Bows from quickly sliding into their offensive sets. That may or may not have been a factor in the ‘Bows’ 6-for-26 shooting from behind the 3-point arc.
Later, the Bulldogs used first-step moves to burst into the lane for easy baskets or to draw fouls.
The ‘Bows had five players in double figures, led by Jack Purchase’s 14.
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The Bulldogs relied on a full-court press and outside shooting to take a 39-28 lead into the intermission.
Four FS starters, including high-scoring guard Braxton Huggins, each committed two first-half fouls. But the Bulldogs were able to stretch thin the ‘Bows’ man-to-man defense with around-the-horn passes leading to 6-for-11 shooting from behind the line.
Samuta Avea came off the UH bench to score eight in a row as part of a 10-run giving the ‘Bows the lead at 21-18. But the Bulldogs answered with a 9-0 run. During that surge, Avea soared for a jam, but Nate Grimes stuffed the attempt. Grimes then scored a layup on a power move to give the Bulldogs a 25-21 lead.
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Fresno State: G Braxton Huggins, G Deshon Taylor, G New Williams, F Sam Bittner, F Nate Grimes.
Hawaii: G Brocke Stepteau, G Drew Buggs, G Sheriff Drammeh, P Jack Purchase, P Zigmars Raimo.
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Two former Western Athletic Conference rivals collide in today’s third-place game of the Wooden Legacy at CS Fullerton’s Titan Gym.
No, there’s no Chris Herren or sword-collecting centers, but it still should be an entertaining matinee event. Braxton Huggins is a 6-4 combo guard who leads the Bulldogs with a 21.5-point scoring average. He’s 46.9 percent on 3s.
UH’s sixth man — Eddie Stansberry — is first in scoring, averaging 13.5 points.