Fresno St. 66, San Jose St. 61
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) _ Chris Herren scored 23 points and Fresno State held San Jose State to two points in the final 4:20 for a 66-61 victory Thursday night.
Daymond Forney added 18 points and Dominick Young 13 for Fresno State (15-8, 7-2 Western Athletic Conference), which retained a share of first place in the WAC Pacific Division. Coach Jerry Tarkanian ran his career record to San Jose State to 35-1.
Olivier Saint-Jean scored 28 points and Brad Quinet 14 for San Jose State (10-9, 2-7 WAC). But Saint-Jean missed the front end of a one-and-one with 16.8 seconds remaining and San Jose State trailing 62-61.
Fresno State’s Rahsaan Smith missed the front end of a one-and-one with 15.9 seconds left, but Forney, who had 11 rebounds in the game, got the offensive rebound. With 11.6 seconds to go, Young made two free throws to extend the Bulldogs’ lead to 64-61.
After San Jose State’s Rick Hite missed a 3-point try, Fresno’s Darnell McCulloch scored on a breakaway dunk for the final margin.
San Jose State, which trailed by 12 points in the first minute of the second half, rallied to take a 59-55 lead with 4:20 to go on a 10-foot spin shot by Saint-Jean.
But Forney answered with a putback and Young made a 3-point goal to put Fresno ahead for good, 60-59, with 3:14 left.
San Jose State’s only basket in the final 4:20 was a layup off a steal by Tito Addison with 52 seconds to go, bringing the Spartans within 62-61.
San Jose State struggled throughout the game to counter Fresno State’s superior leaping ability. The Bulldogs finished with a 42-32 rebounding edge and had eight blocked shots, five by Forney.
Herren scored 17 points on 6-for-9 shooting in the first half, which ended with Fresno State ahead 40-31.
San Jose State freshman center Graeme Anstey, who had started the Spartans’ two previous games, was held out of Thursday night’s game because of an NCAA review of his eligibility.
According to the university, the NCAA is reviewing the athletic history of student-athletes who played basketball in Australia. Anstey is from Keilor, Australia.