CSU BAKERSFIELD (20-7, 11-1 WAC) vs. Chicago St. (6-23, 1-11 WAC)
|Points Per Game||72.0||65.7|
|Field Goal Pct.||.456||.386|
|3-point FG Pct.||.346||.316|
|Free throw Pct.||.623||.702|
|Rebounds Per Game||38.6||35|
|Assists Per Game||15.0||12.4|
|Turnovers Per Game||15.0||13.6|
|Steals Per Game||8.4||6.6|
|Blocks Per Game||3.5||2.2|
BAKERSFIELD, Calif.- With at least a share of the Western Athletic Conference regular-season championship already in hand, the CSUB Roadrunners (20-7, 11-1 WAC) look for the outright championship on Saturday night when they host Chicago State for homecoming at the Icardo Center.
The Roadrunners clinched a piece of their first WAC regular-season title with a 72-61 win over UMKC on Thursday night. They hold a two-game lead in the standings after NM State fell at home to Utah Valley on Thursday night 84-72. The Roadrunners have already claimed the top-seed at next month’s WAC Tournament in Las Vegas.
CSUB has won nine-straight games following their victory Thursday night behind 20 points from Shon Briggs and 57% shooting from the field. CSUB also scored 44 points in the paint in the victory. The Roadrunners also improved to 10-0 at home this season and have won 16-straight dating back to January of 2016, the longest home-winning streak in the WAC.
Chicago State has lost eight in a row following Thursday night’s 82-59 loss at Grand Canyon. Josh Braun torched the Cougars for 29 points on 10-21 from the field and 9-19 from three-point range. Chicago State was led by 21 points from Fred Sims Jr. and Trayvon Palmer’s 15 points in the loss. Sims and Palmer lead the Cougars with 19 and 15 points per game respectively this season.
The Roadrunners are led by Jaylin Airington’s 14 ppg while Damiyne Durham is adding 13 per contest for Bakersfield. CSUB continues to possess the best defense in the WAC and one of the best defenses in the nation. The Roadrunners are allowing just 62.9 points per game this season while also allowing opponents to shoot just 38% from the field, both top marks in the WAC. The Roadrunners also rank 6th in the NCAA in field goal defense (38%), 16th in points allowed, 15th in steals per game (8.5), and 7th in turnovers forced per game (17).
CSUB took the first meeting of the series this season in Chicago 75-59 behind 23 points from Matt Smith and 20 from Airington. CSUB shot 47% in that game and outscored the Cougars 37-12 in the paint. Sims had 15 and Palmer scored 14 for Chicago State.
Tickets for Saturday’s game are selling quickly with the addition of homecoming. Due to the demand, the Icardo Center box office will be open from 9 A.M. to 6 P.M. Friday and from 9 A.M. to game time on Saturday. Tickets can also be purchased by calling 654-BLUE.
Saturday's game will be carried live on Newstalk 1180/96.1 FM KERN beginning at 6:30 P.M. with the Dignity Health Pregame Show. Live video will also be available on the WAC Digital Network at wacsports.com/live. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 P.M.