‘Cats clinch second straight CCAA title

The mens basketball team lines up during the National Anthem in a game against Cal Poly Pomona.

Jacob Auby

The men’s basketball team lines up during the National Anthem in a game against Cal Poly Pomona.

Sophomore Tyler Harris scored a team high 13 points for the men’s basketball team in their conference-clinching 64-57 victory against the Cal State Dominguez Hills Toros on Feb. 25 at home.

On a night where starting sophomore point guard Jalen McFerren was ill, the Wildcats needed the next man to take over his scoring load. Harris proved ready for the challenge. He was perfect from the field, going 5-5, with six rebounds and four assists.

He did his part in the first half, keeping the ‘Cats in the game with a couple assists as well as shooting a 3-pointer. However at halftime, Chico State was down 34-31 to the Toros.

From there, Harris broke out. He subbed in with 14:14 left while the Wildcats were down by six, and proceeded to change the course of the game. After assisting on junior guard Robert Duncan’s jumper, Harris proceeded to score five straight points to help the team regain the lead. He then played a hand in a few more key plays, including assisting on Nate Ambrosini’s 3-pointer as the shot clock expired with six minutes left, to keep the game out of the Toros’ reach.

This win clinched at least a share of the ‘Cats second CCAA title in two years. It was a very balanced scoring effort with Duncan scoring 11, sophomore forward Isaiah Ellis scoring 11 and freshman guard Nate Ambrosini scoring 10 points for Chico State.

This win puts the team at 22-4 for the season and 16-3 in conference play. The ‘Cats look to win the conference title outright on Feb. 27 on the road against Cal State L.A.

Patrick Pace can be reached at [email protected] or @PatPaceSports on Twitter.