Warrior Insider

The Inside Source for Hawaii Men's Basketball

Cal State Fullerton ends Warriors’ season with 62-60 OT victory

HENDERSON, Nev. — Latrell Wrightsell Jr. scored the go-ahead basket with 1:11 remaining and Hawai’i missed a chance to tie the game on free throws with 3.4 seconds remaining in overtime Thursday afternoon as Cal State Fullerton rallied past the Warriors, 62-60, in the Hercules Tires Big West Conference Men’s basketball quarterfinals.

A mostly partisan and vocal Hawai’i crowd of about 1,000 at the Dollar Loan Center Arena watched the Warriors’ season likely end at 22-11, while the Titans (19-12) advanced to Friday’s semifinal game vs. UC Irvine (23-10). 

Just minutes before the crushing defeat, those same fans were cheering loudly as Noel Coleman drained a 24-footer from beyond the top of the key at the regulation horn to force overtime at 60-60, and then when McClanahan drained a jumper from the right elbow 30 seconds into OT to put UH ahead, 60-57.

But that would be it for the Warriors’ offense, which produced only two field goals in the final 6:30 of regulation after taking a 50-49 lead on Samuta Avea’s layup. JoVon McClanahan was fouled on a drive to the basket with 3.4 seconds remaining in overtime, but his first free throw attempt was short and glanced off the front of the rim. He missed the second shot on purpose, again off the front of the rim, but Cal State Fullerton secured the rebound as time elapsed.

Hawai’i had jumped out to a 9-1 lead in the game’s first four minutes and was ahead, 28-27, at halftime.

Avea closed out his career with a game-high 19 points to go with 10 rebounds, Coleman added 14 points and seven boards, and McClanahan contributed 12 points, five assists and three rebounds. Kamaka ended his career with seven points and a game-high 12 boards.

Max Jones led the Titans with 18 points and added six rebounds, Wrightsell finished with 14 points and 10 boards, and Tory San Antonio contributed 11 points and five rebounds.

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