FINAL SCORE: Cal 80, Northridge 63. The Bears win their season opener.
1:30 2nd H: Cal leads 79-61. Gutierrez had a career-high 18 points to go with eight assists. Sanders-Frison had a career-high 15 points along with 10 rebounds. Kamp contributed 12 points and seven rebounds.
11:14 2nd H: The lead has swelled to 56-41 even while Monty is resting Kamp and MSF. Franklin just hit a 3-pointer for the Bears. Northridge is shooting 2 for 15 in the half and Lizarraga has both baskets on putbacks.
12:53 2nd H: Cal has outscored the Matadors 15-2 to open the half and leads 51-39. Northridge has missed nine consecutive shots and has not scored since 18:34. Emerson Murray just hit a jumper off transition for the 12-point margin.
15:44 2nd H: Cal leads 44-39. Playing much better defensively. Northridge is 1- for 6 from the field and hasn’t scored since 18:34. Crabbe just converted a nice pass from Kamp after slicing into the lane.
HALFTIME SCORE: Cal State Northridge 37, Cal 36. A rough start to the season for the Bears, who never figured out how to attack the CSN zone defense. Cal shot 40 percent for the half, Northridge 52 percent. The Bears made 14 of their first 17 FTs, then missed their final five of the half. Northridge shot 6-for-9 from 3-PT but had 10 TOs. The upperclassmen carried the Bears with Kamp and Gutierrez each scoring eight points and MSF adding seven.
3:55 1st H: Cal continues to struggle vs. the zone. Can’t get entry passes into the big guys and the Bears are just 2 for 7 from 3Pt despite Northridge basically asking them to try. Monty is shuffling different combinations in and out, but Gutierrez picked up PF #2 with 4:04 left and is out for the rest of the half. Cal shooting 33 percent, Northridge 57 percent.
7:31 1st H: CSN leads 25-21 with Sanders-Frison going to the line for two shots. Cal is shooting just 25 percent (4 for 16) from the field, and is surviving at the FT line, where it’s 11 for 12. The Bears struggled when Gutierrez came out for about 3 minutes, but he has returned. Northridge shooting 55.6 percent (10 for 18).
11:01 1st H: Cal leads 18-14 following a blocked shot by Crabbe, then a wide-open 3-pointer by the 6-foot-6 freshman wing. CSN made four of its first five 3-pointers, but has missed its past two. The Matadors have five turnovers. Brandon Smith is playing the point with Gutierrez having moved to the wing. Still limited offensive rhythm for the Bears. Bak Bak is replacing MSF.
15:28 1st H: Score is tied at 6-all. Cal is shooting just 2-for-7, making two layups and missing all five perimeter shots. Northridge is playing a zone defense and it’s giving Cal some trouble so far.
LINEUPS: Cal will go with the same five it used in its exhibition last week — Harper Kamp, Markhuri Sanders-Frison, Allen Crabbe, Gary Franklin Jr., and Jorge Gutierrez. Cal State Northridge will open with a lineup featuring two players with East Bay roots — McClymonds HS grad Vinnie McGhee and California School for the Deaf-Fremont grad Michael Lizarraga. Rounding out their group will be Thomas Jaocbs, Dathan Lyles and Raymond Cody.
RECORDS: This is Cal’s regular-season opener. Cal State Northridge is 0-1, having lost 83-50 to UCLA.
WELCOME: Opening night at Haas Pavilion. Should be an interesting night and an interesting season. Practically a whole new cast of characters. It starts here.