SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Four Hornets scored in double figures, and Sacramento State poured in 53 points in the second half on the way to an 82-71 victory over Idaho State on Thursday evening at the Nest.
After trailing at the break, 33-29, the Hornets outscored the Bengals in the second half by a 53-38 margin. The 53 points were the most in a half for the Hornets this season as Sacramento State shot .583 (14-of-24) from the field and .870 (20-23) from the free throw line after halftime. Many of those free throws came during the final 2:36 when the Hornets went 16-of-18 from the charity stripe to put the game away.
Sacramento State began the second half on an 8-2 run and did not trail the final 16:28 of the contest. Sparking the second half surge was guard Dreon Barlett, who finished with career highs in points (18), rebounds (8) and blocked shots (2). Amazingly, all 18 of his points came in the second half when the fourth-year senior went 5-of-7 from the floor (three 3-pointers) and 5-for-5 from the free throw line. Barlett had been 0-for-4 from the field in the first half, but caught fire after converting a four-point play early in the second half.
Joining Barlett in double figures for Sacramento State were forwards Nick Hornsby (14 points, 10 rebounds) and Justin Strings (12 points, 11 rebounds) and guard Marcus Graves (13 points, five assists). The double-double for Hornsby was his second of the season as he finished 4-for-4 from the field and 6-of-7 from the free throw line. Strings notched his second double-double and scored in double figures for the ninth consecutive game. Strings had seven points and seven rebounds in the second half while Hornsby had seven points and six rebounds after the break.
A 13-3 run that spanned 3:24 of game clock late in the second half put the game away, and eventually gave the Hornets a 70-57 lead with 2:22 to play. Five different Hornets scored during the spurt, including Barlett (4), Strings (3), Hornsby (2), Graves (2) and freshman Jeff Wu (2).
With the victory, Sacramento State (8-7, 1-3) picked up its first Big Sky Conference win of the season and avoided the program's first four-game losing streak since the 2011-12 season. The Hornets, who were playing their first conference game at home, had opened the Big Sky season with three straight road losses to conference teams.
The win also came despite fourth-year senior and team co-captain Cody Demps missing his third straight game because of injury. The Hornets have now played five times in their last six games without a starter due to injury.
Sacramento State won its 11th straight regular season home game against a conference opponent. That streak dates back to 2014, as the program went 9-0 against the Big Sky inside the Nest last year. In addition, the team is 6-1 at home this season and 40-10 inside the friendly confines dating back to the beginning of the 2012-13 season.
Idaho State dropped to 6-10 overall and 1-3 in the Big Sky. The Bengals, who split a pair of conference games at home last week, dropped to 1-7 on the road.
Overall, Sacramento State shot .520 (26-of-50) from the field, .400 (8-for-20) from the 3-point line and .846 (22-of-26) from the free throw line. The Hornets outrebounded Idaho State, 42-35, and found a way to win despite a season-high tying 17 turnovers. Sacramento State played well defensively, limiting ISU to .361 shooting (26-of-72) from the field. The Hornets had six blocked shots, including three from conference leader Eric Stuteville.
"In the first half, we were aggressive defensively, but we didn't get much going offensively," Sacramento State head coach Brian Katz said. "We talked about that at halftime, and I thought our guys responded with a very nice second half. We had been struggling of late offensively, so it was nice to break out and put up big numbers in the second half. Overall, I thought we held Idaho State down defensively and grinded out the victory."
The Hornets also got big contributions from Stuteville (nine points, five rebounds, three blocks), Wu (eight points, three assists, two steals in a season-high 28 minutes) and Grant Dressler (six points in a season-high 17 minutes). Both Wu and Dressler are true freshmen.
Idaho State's Ethan Telfair (23), Gary Chivichyan (21) and Geno Luzcando (14) combined for 58 of Idaho State's 71 points. Telfair's 23 points came along with seven rebounds, four assists and six steals in a game-high 39 minutes. However, he shot just 8-of-24 from the field, including 4-for-15 in the second half.
Sacramento State returns to action on Saturday when the team hosts Weber State at 7:05 p.m. The Hornets conclude their three-game homestand next Saturday (Jan. 23) against Portland State at 7:05 p.m.
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February 19, 2016 MEN'S HOOPS HOSTS IDAHO ON SATURDAY NIGHT AT 7 P.M.
February 19, 2016 FORMER MEN'S BASKETBALL ASSISTANT COACH DWAYNE CANADA PASSES AWAY
February 18, 2016 BIG FIRST HALF PROPELS EASTERN WASHINGTON TO 93-88 WIN OVER MEN’S HOOPS
February 16, 2016 MEN'S HOOPS BACK AT THE NEST ON THURSDAY, HOSTS EASTERN WASHINGTON
February 13, 2016 MEN’S BASKETBALL’S LATE RUN FALL SHORT IN 66-64 ROAD LOSS AT IDAHO STATE
February 12, 2016 MEN'S HOOPS TRAVELS TO POCATELLO FOR SATURDAY GAME AT IDAHO STATE
February 11, 2016 MEN’S HOOPS HELD TO SEASON LOW IN POINTS IN 63-50 LOSS AT WEBER STATE
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February 5, 2016 MEN'S BASKETBALL HOSTS MONTANA STATE SATURDAY EVENING AT THE NEST
February 4, 2016 HUGE 2ND HALF HELPS MEN’S BASKETBALL BEAT FIRST-PLACE MONTANA, 83-79
February 3, 2016 MEN'S HOOPS WELCOMES MONTANA TO THE NEST ON THURSDAY NIGHT
February 1, 2016 ANTICIPATION BUILDING ON THE ROAD TO RENO FOR BIG SKY TOURNAMENT
January 29, 2016 MEN'S HOOPS TRAVELS TO EASTERN WASHINGTON FOR SATURDAY MATINEE
January 28, 2016 MEN’S BASKETBALL GETS BIG ROAD WIN AT IDAHO, 65-63
January 27, 2016 MEN'S BASKETBALL TRAVELS TO IDAHO FOR THURSDAY EVENING MATCHUP
January 23, 2016 RED-HOT PORTLAND STATE RACES PAST MEN’S BASKETBALL
January 21, 2016 ROAD TO RENO PRIZE PACKAGE TO BE GIVEN AWAY AT SATURDAY'S MBB GAME
January 15, 2016 MEN'S HOOPS WELCOMES WEBER STATE TO THE NEST ON SATURDAY NIGHT
January 13, 2016 MEN'S BASKETBALL FINALLY BACK AT HOME ON THURSDAY VS. IDAHO STATE
January 9, 2016 MEN’S HOOPS FALLS ON THE ROAD AT MONTANA
January 8, 2016 MEN'S HOOPS WRAPS UP ROAD TRIP ON SATURDAY EVENING AT MONTANA
January 7, 2016 LATE MONTANA STATE RUN DOOMS MEN’S BASKETBALL IN 71-64 LOSS
December 30, 2015 MEN'S BASKETBALL OPENS BIG SKY PLAY SATURDAY AT PORTLAND STATE
December 28, 2015 MEN’S HOOPS IMPROVES TO 7-4 AFTER 78-49 VICTORY OVER PACIFIC UNION
December 27, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS HOSTS PACIFIC UNION ON MONDAY IN FINAL NON-LEAGUE GAME
December 21, 2015 LATE STANFORD RUN SPOILS MEN’S BASKETBALL’S UPSET BID
December 20, 2015 MBB PLAYS AT STANFORD ON MONDAY; 1ST GAME VS. CARDINAL SINCE 2007
December 12, 2015 MEN’S BASKETBALL FALLS TO 6-3 AFTER 81-73 LOSS AT PORTLAND
December 10, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS BEGINS ROAD STRETCH ON SATURDAY EVENING AT PORTLAND
December 8, 2015 JUSTIN STRINGS NAMED BIG SKY MEN’S BASKETBALL PLAYER OF THE WEEK
December 7, 2015 MEN'S BASKETBALL MAKES BIG PLAYS LATE IN WIN OVER INCARNATE WORD
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December 2, 2015 MEN’S HOOPS HAS CHANCES TO WIN LATE, BUT FALLS AT UC DAVIS, 66-61
December 1, 2015 MEN'S BASKETBALL LOOKS FOR SEASON SWEEP OF UC DAVIS ON WEDNESDAY
November 29, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS PLAYS PACIFIC FOR 1ST TIME SINCE 2009 AT THE NEST TODAY
November 29, 2015 MEN’S BASKETBALL IMPROVES TO 5-1 AFTER A 79-71 HOME WIN OVER PACIFIC
November 28, 2015 MEN’S HOOPS DROPS FIRST GAME OF THE SEASON TO SOUTH DAKOTA, 96-90
November 27, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS OPENS HOME TOURNEY SATURDAY VS. SOUTH DAKOTA AT 3:30 PM
November 24, 2015 MEN’S BASKETBALL IMPROVES TO 4-0 WITH AN 84-79 WIN OVER UC DAVIS
November 23, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS AND UC DAVIS HOOK UP FOR 113TH TIME ON TUESDAY AT THE NEST
November 20, 2015 MEN’S HOOPS IMPROVES TO 3-0 AFTER A 96-56 VICTORY OVER HOLY NAMES
November 19, 2015 HOME OPENER FOR MEN'S HOOPS THIS FRIDAY VS. HOLY NAMES AT 7 PM
November 17, 2015 GRAVES NAMED BIG SKY MEN’S BASKETBALL PLAYER OF THE WEEK
November 16, 2015 NATIONAL WEEKLY AWARDS POURING IN FOR MEN'S HOOPS' MARCUS GRAVES
November 15, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS PLAYS 2ND ROAD GAME IN 3 DAYS ON SUNDAY AT SEATTLE
November 15, 2015 HUGE SECOND HALF PROPELS MEN’S HOOPS TO A 77-65 WIN AT SEATTLE
November 13, 2015 LATE RUN GIVES MEN’S BASKETBALL A 66-63 UPSET WIN AT ARIZONA STATE
November 11, 2015 MEN’S BASKETBALL SIGNS BEYER HIGH SCHOOL GUARD GEORGE DANCER
November 9, 2015 GAME NOTES: MEN'S HOOPS OPENS SEASON FRIDAY AT ARIZONA STATE
November 6, 2015 MEN’S BASKETBALL CRUSHES SIMPSON, 103-63, IN EXHIBITION GAME
November 2, 2015 DICKSON BECOMES 2ND PLAYER IN SCHOOL HISTORY DRAFTED IN NBA D-LEAGUE
October 27, 2015 ERNEST TSCHANNEN DONATES $750,000 TO POWER OF 1,000 HORNETS
September 30, 2015 MEN’S HOOPS SEASON QUICKLY APPROACHING, 1ST OFFICIAL PRACTICE ON FRIDAY
September 3, 2015 HEAD COACH BRIAN KATZ RECEIVES FIVE-YEAR COMMITMENT THROUGH 2020
June 29, 2015 MEN’S BASKETBALL ANNOUNCES ITS 2015-16 SCHEDULE