FRESNO, Calif. (AP)--Freshman guard Paul George scored 17 points, including his second straight night with five 3-pointers, and junior forward Sylvester Seay added 15 as the Bulldogs used a heavy defensive pressure, sharp-shooting and the low post to defeat Cal State Bakersfield 66-51 on Wednesday night in a nonconference game.
"Sylvester did a good offensively tonight," Cleveland said of Seay's night that included the Bulldogs first seven points. "I was glad to see his intensity from the start."
The Bulldogs exploded for a 14-0 scoring run to pull away in the second half, avenging a 65-64 loss to Bakersfield a year ago when the Roadrunners were in their first season at Division I.
Senior guard Dwight O'Neil added nine points and five assists for Fresno State (4-4), which finished with a 20-6 edge in assists. Sophomore forward Nedeljko Golubovic recorded a career-high nine rebounds while freshman reserve guard Mychal Ladd dished a career-high four assists in 23 minutes. Junior forward Brian Seals scored four points, including a monster slam dunk.
"The confidence from the team has grown," Cleveland said. "We had different people in different positions tonight."
After trailing by six points at halftime, the Roadrunners opened the second half with a Bryan Emanuel 3-pointer and a steal and dunk by Blakely to cut the deficit to 29-28.
But Fresno State responded with a 20-3 scoring run.
Trent Blakely scored 11 points for Bakersfield (3-6), and Terrence Johns added eight points off the bench.
The Bulldogs hit the hardwood again for a Sunday afternoon game with the Montana Grizzlies at 1 p.m. in the Save Mart Center.