By Christian Cataldo
The Cal Poly Pomona men’s basketball team continued their home stand in Kellogg Gym this weekend, beating Cal State Monterey Bay 66-59 and Cal State East Bay 73-48.
CPP’s overall record is now 15-4, and 11-3 in California Collegiate Athletic Association play, putting them in a tie for first place with Chico State.
The win extends the Broncos home winning streak to seven games.
The Broncos began the weekend by taking down the Otters and their standout sophomore guard, Evan Zeller, for Friday’s Coaches vs. Cancer game.
The night honored all those who have battled with cancer, any many wore pink to show support.
Coming into the game, the Otters ranked first in rebounding above all other teams in the CCAA.
The Broncos accepted the challenge and finished the game with 11 more rebounds than the Otters.
“We just locked in on them [since] we knew they were a good rebounding team,” said head coach Greg Kamansky. “You just got to think about it all the time.”
Junior forward Jordan Faison played a large role in his team.
He dominated the glass with 12 rebounds, nine of which came from the first half.
The Broncos didn’t shoot the ball well, but working in the offensive glass allowed the team to accumulate 11 second-chance points.
“Jordan had a real good rebounding game, basically our whole team did,” said Kamansky. “We weren’t shooting very well tonight, and so second chances were everything.”
CPP showed glimpses of their strong defense, but at times rotations and communication were lackluster.
“They scored 15 points in the first [couple] minutes of the game,” said Kamansky. “Then we held them to seven points for the rest of the half. We just got more aggressive on defense and our rotations got better, [but in the] second half we got a little lazy on some rotations and recognition.
“We did enough offensively at the end, which was big for us.”
Senior guard Terrence Drisdom and junior guard Barry Bell provided a lift on offense with their double-digit scoring performances.
Drisdom finished the game with 14 points, making five of his ten field goal attempts.
Bell finished with 12 points by converting on four of his eight field goal attempts.
Drisdom attributed the team’s energy to the win.
“Last week we felt like we didn’t come out with a lot of energy, [and] we were unhappy with that,” said Drisdom. “We just made it an effort this week to bring more energy and lift each other up, [because] the more energy we bring, the harder we play for each other.”
The Broncos continued the strong play when they defeated Cal State East Bay on Saturday.
Their dominance came from their outstanding rebounding.
They finished the game with 42 rebounds, as opposed to the Pioneers’ 23 rebounds.
Rebounding was a total team effort as five Broncos finished the game with at least five each.
The Broncos converted on their open looks as well, finishing with a 48 percent field goal percentage.
CPP had four players finish the game with double-digit points, making it a total team effort.
Drisdom contributed 12 points. Bell finished with 11, Faison added 11 and sophomore guard Quentin Taylor tallied 12.
The Broncos forced the Pioneers to play erratically and take forced shots. East Bay jacked up 29 three-pointers, only converting on eight of them.
The Broncos are starting to round into post-season form as the season’s end is approaching, but there is still plenty of room for improvement.
“We’re still far from playing our best basketball,” said Kamansky. “We got to get our offense moving better, and doing some good things.”
Drisdom agrees, saying that the little things matter for the Broncos.
“There’s room for improvement with a lot of things,’ said Drisdom. “Communication, defense” We need to probably move a little bit more on offense.
“Overall, I think we just need to move forward as a team collectively and just really do it for each other.”
CPP will hit the road next weekend as they continue conference play.
On Friday, the Broncos will face the Cal State Stanislaus Warriors in Ed & Bertha Fitzpatrick Arena.
Then, on Saturday, CPP will take on the Chico State Wildcats in Art Acker Gymnasium for a huge CCAA matchup.
Hayden Yi / The Poly Post
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