IRVINE, Calif. -- Max Hazzard scored 15 of his 19 points in the second half to help UC Irvine pull away and beat Cal State Fullerton 60-53 on Wednesday night for its sixth straight win.
It is the earliest an Anteaters (20-5, 8-1 Big West Conference) squad has reached the 20-win mark. It's the best start in coach Russell Turner's nine seasons, and the best since the 2000-01 team opened 21-3.
Hazzard was 4 of 8 from 3-point range. Jonathan Galloway added 14 points and 11 rebounds for UC Irvine.
Khalil Ahmad scored just nine of his 22 points in the second half for CSU Fullerton (9-13, 5-3), which had its five-game win streak snapped. Ahmad finished 8-of-21 shooting and missed all five of his 3-point attempts. Jackson Rowe added 10 points.
The Titans stretched their three-point halftime lead to 26-18. A 12-3 surge, capped by Collin Welp's 3-pointer, gave the Anteaters a 30-29 lead. CSU Fullerton tied it at 30, but Eyassu Worku answered with another 3 to spark an 11-2 run and UCI led the rest of the way. Hazzard hit consecutive 3s during the stretch.
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Francois Lewis and freshman Adam Flagler scored 19 points apiece as Presbyterian beat Robert Morris 77-70 in the second round of the CIT on Sunday.
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Tennessee avoided one of the biggest meltdowns in NCAA Tournament history Sunday, letting a 25-point lead slip away before two-time SEC player of the year Grant Williams scored 6 points in overtime for an 83-77 victory over Iowa.
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