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Fullerton Gripes After Dropping 10th Straight Game

March 02, 2000|CHRIS FOSTER

UC Irvine took its turn at beating up on Cal State Fullerton, which has lost 10 consecutive games and its coach, Bob Hawking, who resigned last week.

The third-longest losing streak in school history has left the Fullerton players grumbling about the program.

"This school doesn't have anything to offer high quality players," said forward Ike Harmon, who scored 28 points Wednesday in an 88-71 loss before an announced crowd of 812 at Titan Gym.

"I've averaged more points this year than we have fans. I try to pump up the school to other players, but the school doesn't pump itself up.

"If they are not on the comp list, they don't come [to the games]. I don't want to go out like this."

Irvine, meanwhile, is heading in the opposite direction . . . slowly.

The victory snapped a seven-game losing streak to Fullerton and the Anteaters need only to beat North Texas on Saturday to clinch a spot in the Big West Conference tournament.

The Anteaters (13-13, 6-9) struggled a little. They led, 50-37, three minutes into the second half, but the Titans (8-18, 3-12) went on a 10-1 run--which included two tip-in baskets by walk-on Jon Stoa--to make it 51-47 with 12 minutes left.

"Playing a team like this, it can go either way," Irvine forward Marek Ondera said. "They could start playing well or they can get out of their stuff."

Fullerton went the latter route.

Malachi Edmond (19 points) and Jerry Green (19 points) carved up the Titan defense in the last 10 minutes.

Irvine's last eight baskets were layups or dunks.

Green had seven rebounds and five assists. Freshman Matt Okoro had career highs with 12 points and 11 rebounds.

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