NORTHRIDGE, Calif. – Senior guard Dylan Royer matched career highs for three-pointers (seven) and points (23) and the Cal Poly men's basketball team shot a program-record 80.0 percent from three-point range on Thursday evening in producing an 81-61 triumph against Cal State Northridge inside the Matadome.
Junior forward Chris Eversley added 23 points for Cal Poly (14-12, 9-6), which finished 12-for-15 beyond the arc to erase the previous program record of 71.4 (15-for-21) percent, established during a 100-54 home win against Cal State Northridge (13-16, 4-12) on Jan. 21, 2012. Royer, who also shot a career-high 87.5 (7-for-8) percent from the three-point line and finished one three-pointer shy of the Mustang single-game record, helped the Mustangs to their first win at Cal State Northridge since registering a 79-68 triumph on Jan. 27, 2007.
Highlighted by a career-high nine assists from junior guard Jamal Johnson, Cal Poly finished with 22 assists – the highest total in 120 games under fourth-year head coach Joe Callero. Johnson, who entered Wednesday's matchup ranked 11th among NCAA Division I players in assist-to-turnover ratio (now 3.03-to-1), committed just one turnover against the Matadors in 30 minutes.
Cal Poly contests its final road game of the regular season when visiting Hawai'i on Saturday, March 2. Tip time inside the Stan Sheriff Center is set for 9:30 p.m. PT (7:30 p.m. HST).
Royer connected on his opening four three-point attempts as Cal Poly, which held Cal State Northridge without a field goal during a nine-minute span midway through the first half, ran out to a 25-11 advantage. The Matadors responded with baskets on successive possessions, but after being held to a 28.0 (7-for-25) percent field goal mark during the first half, Cal State Northridge failed to close any closer than within eight points of the Mustang lead.
Cal Poly closed the final 65 seconds of the first half with an 8-0 run as Johnson completed a three-point play and senior guard Chris O'Brien hit a three-pointer before Royer rolled in a layup at the buzzer to provide the Mustangs a 38-22 lead at the break.
Layups from Matador freshman forward Tre Hale-Edmerson and sophomore guard Stephan Hicks to begin the second half cut Cal Poly's lead to 13 points, but an Eversley dunk followed by Royer's fifth three-pointer of the evening extinguished Cal State Northridge's ambition by reaffirming the Mustang advantage at 45-27 with 16-and-a-half minutes to play.
Royer added his sixth three-pointer a minute later before the second of Eversley's three three-pointers with 13 minutes remaining lifted Cal Poly to its largest lead of the night at 57-36.
Eversley finished with a team-leading eight rebounds for Cal Poly while senior guard Drake U'u produced six assists against zero turnovers.