Men’s Basketball warm up with win against Occidental

Hunter Seymour dunks the basketball over a Simon Fraser University defender. Photo courtesy of Jena Rouser, CSUDH Athletics

By Raymond Castillo, Staff Reporter 

Fresh off a loss in their exhibition season opener at the University of California, Riverside, on a cold, winter-like evening in Southern California, the California State University,  Dominguez Hills, men’s basketball team opened up the 2022-2023 home slate with a dominating 26 point victory over Occidental College, and in front of 200 fans, freshman guard Jeremy Dent-Smith announced his arrival.

The Toros dominated from the opening tip and jumped out to an early 28-9 lead in the first half and eventually closed the half up 18 at 40-22 and did so to start without the freshman. 

At least for the first two minutes and 56 seconds.

Jeremy Dent-Smith, the team’s first man off of the bench, checked into the game at the 17:04 mark in the first half and took the Toros the rest of the way. The Toros were led in scoring by Dent-Smith’s 18 points on 7-16 from the field and 4-10 from three. Den-Smith also chipped in four rebounds, and one assist. More than that, Dent-Smith provided energy and a spark as he zigged and zagged on the court transitioning from offense to defense looking for any way to help his team. 

He was the best player by far on the court for both sides and it showed.

Junior guard Damien Miller added 6 points, 6 assists, and 8 rebounds while senior forward Hunter Seymour nabbed 6 rebounds and a nasty block that kept the Toro spirits high throughout the night. Junior guard Isaiah Morris chipped in 4 rebounds and 4 assists in 19 minutes off the bench.

All players active on the Toro roster got into the game and all five starters recorded a stat. Overall, the Toros shot over 40% from the field and over 35% from the three-point line. Not too bad, but is to be expected of the team that is predicted to be in the playoffs, according to the preseason CCAA Men’s Basketball Coaches Poll.

The Toros absolutely dominated the Tigers in every major statistical category. They led in rebounds by almost 20 (56-38), more than doubled the Tigers assists (17-8), and edged them in steals (9-8). 

The Tigers were led in scoring by senior guard Sydney Shipp’s 12 points. Shipp was the only member of the Black and Orange to score in double figures as the Toro defense dominated the Tiger offense, holding them to a measly 30.2% from the field overall and 25% from three-point land. 

Senior guard/forward Anthony Hollerich chipped in for the Tigers with a team, leading 8 rebounds in the game

The Toro’s will open their regular season with a road trip as they travel to British Columbia, Canada next to take on Simon Fraser University in the CCAA/GNAC Challenge on Nov. 11 at 7:30 p.m. The Toros are expected to be good this year after losing in the semi-final round of the CCAA tournament to California State University, San Bernardino last year.