COMPLETE WEEKLY RELEASE (pdf)
SAN LUIS OBISPO – The Cal Poly men's basketball program plays its first Big West Conference road game of the season when visiting Hawai'i in a Wednesday, Jan. 10 matchup. Tip time inside the 10,300-seat Stan Sheriff Center on O'ahu is 9 p.m. PT (7 p.m. HT) for Cal Poly (6-10, 1-1), which enters Wednesday's matchup ranked 23rd among 351 NCAA Division I programs at just 11.3 turnovers per game. The Mustangs opened Big West play last week by first turning a 21-point deficit into an 80-79 victory versus UC Santa Barbara (Jan. 4) and then hitting 19 three-pointers versus Cal State Fullerton (Jan. 6) to overturn a 12-point, second-half deficit before falling to the Titans in overtime, 101-97. Hawai'i (10-5, 1-1), hosting Cal Poly in its Big West home opener, began conference play with an 89-81 loss at Long Beach State (Jan. 4) before defeating CSUN, 65-46 (Jan. 6).
FOLLOW CAL POLY THIS WEEK: Chris Sylvester will have the call of Wednesday's meeting at Hawai'i for ESPN 1280 in San Luis Obispo County and via GoPoly.com HERE … live stats and streaming video will also be available via GoPoly.com HERE.
CAL POLY VERSUS HAWAI'I: The Mustangs look to snap a five-game slide versus Hawai'i dating to a 61-57 overtime victory on O'ahu (Jan. 7, 2015). Hawai'i holds a 7-6 all-time series advantage versus Cal Poly and a 6-4 mark since the Warriors joined the Big West Conference for the 2012-13 season. Hawai'i captured last year's matchup inside the Stan Sheriff Center, 74-65 (Feb. 9).
STAN SHERIFF REVISITED: With the Mustang men's basketball program making its eighth all-time visit to Hawai'i, Cal Poly shares an historic link with the Stan Sheriff Center. An All-America selection in football at Cal Poly, Sheriff (1950-54) is a charter member of the Cal Poly Athletics Hall of Fame. An NFL standout with the Los Angeles Rams, Pittsburgh Steelers, San Francisco 49ers and Cleveland Browns, Sheriff was the head coach at Northern Iowa for 23 years before becoming Hawai'i's Director of Athletics in 1983.
THE WELL-ROUNDED DONOVAN FIELDS: Ranked 12th among approximately 5,500 NCAA Division I players with a 92.1 (35-for-38) percent free throw mark and second in Cal Poly's lineup at 14.3 points per game, junior guard Donovan Fields also enters Wednesday's matchup at Hawai'i ranked third among Big West Conference players with 4.7 assists per game, fourth with 1.4 steals per game and ninth in scoring. Fields has twice matched a career high with 23 points at Santa Clara (Nov. 18) and versus Cal State Fullerton (Jan. 6) and reached double-digit scoring figures in 11 of 16 games. Averaging 12.3 career points per game, Fields has scored in double figures 30 times in 47 (63.8 percent) Division I appearances. His 11-assist effort versus Pepperdine (Dec. 2) stands as the highest single game total in 265 games under ninth-year head coach Joe Callero.
WHEN IT COMES TO FREE THROWS, TAKE THE FIELDS: Having knocked down his first 28 free throw attempts of the season before finally missing against Princeton (Dec. 16), Donovan Fields ranks 12th among approximately 5,500 NCAA Division I players with a Big West Conference best 92.1 (35-for-38) percent free throw mark. On pace to eclipse the Cal Poly single season free throw record of 90.0 (54-for-60) percent set by guard Reese Morgan in 2012-13, Fields is also the leading free throw shooter in Cal Poly program history at 88.4 (107-for-121) percent.
JOSEPH PACKS THE SCORING PUNCH: Cal Poly's leader with 15 double-digit scoring efforts in 16 games – including a career high 33-point effort versus Cal State Fullerton (Jan. 6), the program highest total in eight seasons – senior guard Victor Joseph ranks eighth among Big West players at 14.9 points per game. Joseph, whose seven three-pointers versus Cal State Fullerton were one shy of matching the Cal Poly program record, also ranks second among Big West players with an 88.9 (40-for-45) percent three-point mark. Having scored in double figures 30 times in 47 career games (63.8 percent), Joseph is averaging 13.0 career points per game for the Mustangs.
HOLLINGSWORTH LEADS CAL POLY ON BOTH ENDS: The Big West's leading shooter at 67.3 (33-for-49) percent and second leading shot blocker at 2.3 per game, 6-10 sophomore forward Hank Hollingsworth established a new program single game record with seven blocks versus Cal State Fullerton (Jan. 6). Also Cal Poly's leading rebounder at 4.9 per game, Hollingsworth secured a second career double-double with a collegiate best 12 points and 10 rebounds versus Pepperdine (Dec. 2), Hollingsworth is a 61.3 (46-for-75) percent career shooter. Having blocked multiple shots in 11 of 16 games this year, Hollingsworth – in just 44 career games – ranks seventh in program history with 64 career blocks.
CAL POLY'S QUALITY CONTROL: No Division I program has committed fewer turnovers per game since the beginning of the 2012-13 season than Cal Poly, which has averaged just 9.76 turnovers per 172 matchups (1,679 turnovers total). Cal Poly, 23rd among 351 Division I programs thus far at 11.3 turnovers per game, has finished with a single-digit turnover figure six times this season with a low of just four versus Notre Dame de Namur (Dec. 30) and six against UC Santa Barbara (Jan. 4). Cal Poly has led the Big West in fewest turnovers per game in each of the last five years.
MUSTANGS FACE ANOTHER TESTING SCHEDULE THIS SEASON: Once again contesting one of the Big West Conference's more demanding schedules, Cal Poly will play nine games this season against opponents that qualified for the NCAA Tournament and NIT last year.
LOOKING AHEAD (JAN. 15-21): Cal Poly closes a three-game road trip with a pair of ESPN3-broadcasted matchups at UC Irvine (Thursday, Jan. 18) and CSUN (Saturday, Jan. 20). The Mustangs claimed two of their four Big West road victories last season at UC Irvine and CSUN, topping the Anteaters 79-66 (Jan. 26) and Matadors 85-71 (Feb. 15).
ETC: During a 73-68 win versus the College of Charleston (Nov. 22) – the first game in program history against the Cougars – Cal Poly set a new program record with a 100 (11-for-11) percent mark from the free throw line … Cal Poly's Dec. 19 visit to SMU marked the first time in NCAA Division I history that two schools which feature Mustangs as a mascot played … Cal Poly improved to 38-1 against non-Division I opposition with a 73-40 home victory versus Notre Dame de Namur on Dec. 30 (Cal Poly became a Division I program to begin the 1994-95 season) … an 80-79 victory against UC Santa Barbara (Jan. 4) handed Cal Poly its fifth victory to open Big West play in the last seven seasons … Cal Poly's 19 three-pointers versus Cal State Fullerton (Jan. 21) were two shy of the program record while the nine blocks versus the Titans were one shy of matching the program record.