Men’s Basketball Holds On At Hawaii, Earns Bell First Career Head Coaching Win

gohighlanders.com

Honolulu, HI – The UC Riverside Men’s Basketball Team (6-17, 1-8) earned its first Big West victory of the season Wednesday night at Hawaii (13-9, 4-5), prevailing 64-60 to give Interim Head Coach Justin Bell his first career head coaching win.”From a morale standpoint, our guys have been fired up all year,” Bell said. “They’re ready to play, they practice hard, we demand a lot out of them, and they come every day ready to practice. I think because they practice hard, they believe.”KEY RUNS
Trailing by four with 7:06 left in the game, five straight points from Chance Murray capped a 10-2 Highlander run, giving them their first lead of the second half, 50-49. After Hawaii regained the lead, a Murray triple would put UC Riverside back up, 55-53 at the 2:30 mark.Over the final 91 seconds, Menno Dijkstra and DJ Sylvester contributed with huge three-pointers of their own, putting the Highlanders up 62-57 with just 16 seconds on the clock. Following a Hawaii three which cut it to two with under 10 seconds left, a pair of Dijkstra free throws would ice the game in UCR’s favor.GAME NOTES
Junior Menno Dijkstra tied a career-best with team-highs of 17 points and 6 rebounds, finishing 6-of-12 (.500) from the field and a stellar 3-of-4 (.750) from beyond the arc. It was the third time in his career that he finished with 17 points, and the first time this season.”[Dijkstra’s] been a little banged up all year, but we’ve been waiting for this Menno,” Bell said. “What a great night for him to step up on the road, build some confidence, and he’s getting more and more healthy, so we’re excited about that.”Chance Murray added 16 points (7-12 FG) to go along with a game-high 6 assists. The senior from Los Angeles did most of his damage in the second half, when he went 5-of-8 (.625) for 12 points, including …

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