San Jose State beats Fresno State 71-68 in OT

Preview | Box Score | Recap| *San Jose St.

FRESNO, Calif. (AP)—C.J. Webster scored a career-high 23 points, including the go-ahead free throws in overtime, as San Jose State outlasted Fresno State 71-68 on Saturday night.

After Webster’s free throws put San Jose State (7-7, 1-3) ahead 69-68 with 34 seconds left, the Bulldogs missed three 3-pointers in the closing seconds. Chris Oakes, who had 14 points, hit two free throws with 18 seconds remaining to seal the Spartans’ first Western Athletic Conference victory.

Dwight O’Neil scored a career-high 22 points to go with nine rebounds and seven assists for Fresno State (7-9, 0-2), but missed an off-balance jumper at the buzzer that would’ve sent the game into double overtime.

Paul George added 18 points for the Bulldogs, who scored just 19 second-half points and frittered away a six-point lead with 4:18 left in regulation.

It was San Jose State’s first-ever victory at the Save Mart Center, which opened in 2003, and the Spartans’ first win in Fresno since Dec. 4, 1993.

Trailing 63-60, San Jose State forced overtime when Justin Graham make the first of two free throws with 15 seconds left. Graham missed the second, but Webster grabbed the offensive rebound and slipped in for the layup with seven seconds left.

The Bulldogs raced downcourt, but O’Neil missed a hurried three-pointer at the buzzer.

Webster, whose previous career high of 22 points came Monday against New Mexico State, also finished with a game-high 11 rebounds and six assists. Robert Owens added 13 points, and Tyler Graham had 11 points and eight assists.

Fresno State lost despite leading by as many as 11 points early in the second half and shooting 54.3 percent in regulation.

The Bulldogs were held without a field goal in the final 4:18 of regulation and went 3:45 without scoring down the stretch.

It was quite a turnaround from the first half, when Fresno State shot 64.3 percent to fashion a nine-point halftime lead. O’Neil had 15 points and three assists to spark a late surge.

After making his third three-pointer of the half, O’Neil drove the lane, hung in the air and rolled in layup to put the Bulldogs ahead 42-35. San Jose State turned the ball over, and O’Neil fed Daniel Webster underneath with 35 seconds left.

There were 12 ties and eight lead changes in the game. San Jose State dominated the interior, evidenced by a 44-30 edge in points scored in the paint.

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Top Performers

 Top Performers
 San Jose St.
C.J. Webster C.J. Webster
9-21,  23 Pts
11 Rebs, 6 Assists
 Fresno St.
Dwight O'Neil Dwight O'Neil
8-16,  22 Pts
9 Rebs, 7 Assists

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Saturday, Jan 10