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Cal hopes to avenge last year’s loss to streaky UC San Diego

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UC San Diego attempts to complete a two-game sweep through Northern California when the Tritons visit Cal for both teams’ nonconference finale Wednesday night in Berkeley, Calif.

UCSD (6-5) has been streaky this season. After opening with four straight wins, followed by four defeats in a row, the Tritons have won two of three, including 83-52 at Sacramento State on Monday night.

The Tritons hadn’t played for nine days before the trip north to the California capital. Coach Eric Olen thought his players took advantage of the light schedule.

“We’ve had a little bit of a break with finals. Coming off of that, we had some good days of practice,” Olen said after the Sacramento State game. “I think our guys recognize the things we need to do to have success. I thought collectively up and down the roster, everybody was ready to go, played at a high level and really showed what we’re capable of.”

UCSD will have to deal with a revenge-minded Cal team after the Tritons beat the Golden Bears 64-62 in a home game in November 2022.

Both teams will feature a very different look in the rematch.

The Tritons are now led by Tyler McGhie, a transfer from NAIA member Southern Nazarene who had a splashy debut for UCSD in Sacramento, pouring in 22 points. McGhie previously played one season at Western Carolina.

Cal (3-7) is led by four transfers, including Jaylon Tyson, who had 22 points in the Golden Bears’ most recent outing, an 88-78 loss to unbeaten Ole Miss on Saturday in San Antonio. Tyson averages 20.1 points and 7.7 rebounds per game.

Cal coach Mark Madsen was encouraged by the fact that his team outscored the Rebels 43-42 in the second half after stumbling out of the gate, digging a 28-14 hole in the first 10 minutes.

“We got off to a slow start,” Madsen said of his club’s second straight loss after an impressive 84-69 home win over Santa Clara. “We didn’t have enough resistance. We went zone, and they diced up our zone. You throw those first six minutes out, we’re right there.”

All three Cal wins have come in five home games this season.

–Field Level Media

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