The Fresno State Bulldogs harbored hopes of moving up in the hierarchy of Mountain West basketball. If their opening performance is any indication, it's going to be a long climb.
Despite a strong performance by Marvelle Harris, the 'Dogs fell to the Pepperdine Waves 89-74 on Friday night. Harris, the team's top returning scorer from last year's run to the CBI final, led Fresno with 25 points on 10-of-18 shooting, 6 assists and 5 rebounds. Highly touted Texas transfer Julien Lewis had a decent debut, as well, contributing 19 points, but he lacked the scoring touch from beyond the arc tonight, going 0-for-5 on 3-point attempts while the team shot 20% and were shut down after halftime.
Sophomore guard Paul Watson also had a game to forget, finishing with just 7 points before fouling out late in the second half.
Most of the issues that plagued Fresno State in this game were familiar to anyone who watched the Bulldogs in non-conference play a year ago, as the Waves put together a shooting display that bested all but one game from their 2013-14 campaign. All five Pepperdine starters finished with double-digit scoring, led by Stacy Davis's 22 points, and the team as a whole shot 56.9% from the field and won the battle at the free throw line by converting 26 of 32 chances.
The Bulldogs (0-1) will get a few days to regroup before hosting Bristol University for the home opener on Monday night.