Nov. 9, 2012
(San Diego, CA) - The USD Toreros (1-0) kicked off the 2012-13 season with a convincing 91-58 win over the visiting San Diego Christian Hawks (0-1). The Toreros got off to a slow start but eventually turned the tide with their defensive play to pull away to a rout. Junior Dennis Kramer came off the bench to chip in with 16 points in 18 minutes on 6-of-7 shooting, and senior Chris Manresa chipped in with 14 points while converting 6-of-7 shots.
"I thought our approach was a little casual at both ends of the floor in the first part of the game," said 6th-year head coach Bill Grier. "But what I was pleased with was that they knew it and responded with about 8 minutes to go in the half by starting to defend like the way we are capable of. Part of it was I thought early on we got away from our defensive plan and that San Diego Christian did a nice job of exposing it. But I thought we broke it open towards the end of the half when we defended better. And coming out in the second half, I told this group that I was really happy with their approach coming out of the locker room and that carried through the rest of the game."
First-year junior guard Mike Davis chipped in with 12 points on 5-of-10 shooting, and senior forward Ken Rancifer added 10 points with a game-high 9 rebounds. Sophomore guards Christopher Anderson (8 points, 6 assists) and Johnny Dee (8 points) started in the backcourt, and Simi Fajemisin and Jito Kok each added 3 blocked shots.
In the first half the visitors led 27-22 with 7:26 to go, but the Toreros were able to close it out with a 22-4 run and 44-31 intermission lead. Kramer was one of the key sparks as he scored 10 of his 16 points in the final 10 minutes of the first half. In the second half San Diego Christian would not be able to get any closer than the halftime deficit, and the Toreros would go on to lead by as many as 36 with under two minutes to play.
For the game USD shot 51.4% from the field (36-70) and outrebounded the Hawks 53-28. SDCC was paced by Jacob Garcia and Brian Simmons, each with 7 points.
The Toreros return to the Jenny Craig Pavilion next Wednesday, November 14th, when they kickoff the 2012 NUCDF Basketball Challenge with Northern Kentucky at 7pm. The five-day tournament will run through Sunday with the Toreros also hosting Cal State Northridge, Tulsa and Siena.