POSTGAME REACTION: JOE CALLERO | MICHAEL BOLDEN | MALIIK LOVE
SAN LUIS OBISPO – Sophomore guard Ridge Shipley scored a team-leading 16 points and senior guard Maliik Love (right) – in his final appearance inside Mott Athletics Center – added 11, but the Cal Poly men's basketball team closed its 2014-15 home schedule Saturday evening with a 66-56 loss to UC Davis.
Junior wing David Nwaba chipped in with eight points for Cal Poly (13-14, 6-9), which led UC Davis (22-5, 12-2) 17-16 with nine minutes remaining in the first half before conceding a 14-5 entering the break. The Mustangs, who shot 44.0 (22-for-50) percent from the floor but allowed a 55.8 (24-43) percent mark to UC Davis, trailed 30-22 at halftime and never cut their deficit to fewer than seven points the remainder of the evening.
Junior forward Joel Awich grabbed a game-leading six rebounds for Cal Poly, which finished 7-4 inside Mott Athletics Center this season. Saturday's 3,032-fan attendance figure marked Cal Poly's second sellout of Mott Athletics Center this season.
Cal Poly closes the 2014-15 regular season at Blue-Green rival UC Santa Barbara on Saturday, March 7. Tip time is 3 p.m. with action televised via Fox PRIME TICKET.
Shipley knocked down two of his four three-pointers inside the opening four minutes and Cal Poly led by as much as 12-8 12 minutes before the break. However, UC Davis – which shot poorer in the first half (52.3 percent) than it did the second (60.0) – held Cal Poly to five points for an ensuing nine-minute stretch.
Leading 30-22 at the break, UC Davis received its opening nine points of the second half from senior forward Josh Ritchart through three layups and a three-pointer to stretch its advantage to 47-29 with 11 minutes to play.
After junior guard Reese Morgan sank two free throws, Love found Awich for an alley-oop dunk before converting a pair of layups to pull Cal Poly within 10 points of UC Davis at 47-37.
UC Davis, however, quickly reestablished a 15-point advantage and Cal Poly – after thrice cutting its gap to eight points late – failed to draw closer.
The Mustangs held UC Davis to just 23 rebounds – the lowest total by a Cal Poly opponent this season.