Season-high in turnovers haunt Mustangs in 78-50 loss to Weber State

Matthew Ho and Charlie Wiltsee

Four days of rest wasn’t enough for Cal Poly men’s basketball to change the trajectory of their road trip, something that was apparent from the first basket of Saturday’s matchup with Weber State.

Saturday’s game was the Mustangs’ (3-7) final non-conference road game of the season, and turnovers challenged the team yet again in what was their third straight road loss, to a score of 78-50. 10 games into the season, and the team averages 12.4 turnovers per game.

The Wildcats (5-3) disrupted the Mustangs’ rhythm early on, forcing the offense into tough situations reminiscent of their previous matchup with Oregon State, where they committed 17 turnovers.

The Mustangs finished the game with a season-high 24 turnovers, souring what was otherwise a highly efficient game. They shot 43.9% from the field and a notable 41.7% from three, both higher than the Wildcats totals for the game.

Cal Poly attempted to counter the early pressure by running the offense through graduate forward Tuukka Jaakkola in the post. Jaakola finished the game with eight points on efficient shooting numbers, but it wasn’t enough to slow down the dominant Wildcat squad.

Mustangs’ senior guard Kobe Sanders was held quiet in the first half, scoring just five points. Sanders, who leads the team with 17.4 points per game and is fifth in the Big West in scoring, found his rhythm in the second half and finished the game with 16 points.

NBA all-star Lauri Markannen was in attendance supporting Jaakkola and Wildcats guard/forward Viljami Vartiainen. The three all attended the Helsinki Basketball Academy in Finland.

Away games have continued to be a source of concern for the Mustangs squad, as the loss drops their road record to 0-6. They have shown more poise at home, going 2-0 so far this year, including a strong overtime win against San Jose State.

The Mustangs competed with Oregon State in their previous matchup, taking the Pac-12 program to double overtime, but ultimately fell in what would’ve been the Mustangs’ first Pac-12 win in over a decade.

Cal Poly has two more non-conference games left before they open league play against Cal State Northridge on Dec. 28.

The Mustangs will look to get back on track against Eastern Washington on Dec. 18 at the Mott Athletics Center.

Matthew Ho and Charlie Wiltsee Men’s Basketball,Sports,big west,Cal Poly basketball,Kobe Sanders,Tuukka Jaakola

2023-12-10 05:55:48 , Mustang News

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