College Notebook: Academy of Art men’s basketball forward Andrija Blatancic wins Player of the Week

Urban Knights’ Perkins on a roll (ARTU WBB): The Academy of Art University women’s basketball team has had a tough season at 2-8, but sophomore forward Lily Perkins has scored 49 points in the last three games, including 20 in back-to-back contests.

Perkins, averaging 12.0 points per game, scored 20 in a close 58-54 loss to Chaminade, and then 20 again in a 64-52 win over Hawaii-Hilo on Jan. 4.

ART U’s Blatancic wins POW honors (ARTU MBB): Junior forward Andrija Blatancic earned his first PacWest Player of the Week award for a blistering stretch in three games last week.

The 6-foot-7 Norwegian posted two double-doubles, scored 81 points, shot 69 percent from the field, and led the Urban Knights to one of their biggest wins in program history, a 71-69 win over Chaminade.

Blatancic started the week with a double-double, on a career-high 26 points and 11 rebounds in ART U’s 73-60 win over Hawaii Pacific on on Dec. 31. Against the Silverswords, Blatancic led the team in scoring and rebounds, posting his second straight double-double with 24 points, 11 rebounds, and two blocks.

He finished the week off with a 31 point scoring outburst against Hawaii-Hilo on on Jan. 4, the sixth-highest single-game scoring performance in program history.

ART U Women’s Basketball/Track & Field Alumni To Compete In NBC’s Titan Games: Former Academy of Art women’s basketball and track & field standout Jasmin Guinn has qualified to be one of the 64 competitors in The Titan Games, an upcoming gameshow inspired by Dwayne Johnson’s desire to motivate global audiences to reach their potential both mentally and physically.

In her four-year ART U career, Guinn was a three-time All-PacWest First Team honoree (twice in basketball, once in track & field), two-time PacWest Defender of the Year, and helped Academy of Art women’s basketball win the first two PacWest Conference Tournament titles in 2012-13 and 2013-14. She holds the team’s career records in points, rebounds, and steals.

Golden Gators on a roll (SF State WBB): The San Francisco State women’s basketball team made history on Saturday, beating Cal State Los Angeles 87-85 for the team’s fifth straight win, the program’s longest streak since the 2009-10 season, when went 15-16 and lost in the CCAA championship game to Chico State.

The Gators (7-7) scored 29 points in the second quarter, and used a late fourth-quarter push to seal the win. San Francisco State next faces 5-7 Sonoma State on Jan. 12 at 1 p.m. in Rohnert Park.

Clem, Herrera lead SF State wrestling at Menlo Open (SF State WRE): Redshirt sophomore Kurtis Clem and sophomore Andrew Herrera each took first place in their respective weight classes at the Menlo Open. Clem, 7-4 on the season, defeated Logan Nelson of Simon Fraser 5-4 to take the 174-pound title, while Herrera improved to 7-6 with a win over Anthony Lodermeier of No. 23 Colorado Mesa, winning a major decision, 18-6, in the 197-pound final. It was Herrera’s second win over Lodermeier.

Justin Pichedwatana took Anthony Orozco of Menlo to overtime, losing 5-3 in the final of the 184-pound division. En route to the title bout, he ran his personal winning streak to eight straight, and he’s now 10-5.

SF State Men’s Basketball finishes road trip with win over Cal State L.A.: The Gators have won four of their last six en route to a 9-5 start, beating the Golden Eagles 88-79 on Saturday behind a season-best shooting performance. San Francisco State shot a season-best 58.8 percent (30-of-51) from the field and a season-best 53.3 percent (8-of-15) from distance, all while holding Cal State L.A. to 38.2 percent shooting (26-of-68), moving the Gators to 6-0 when holding a team under 39.0 percent.

Five San Francisco State players finished in double digits, the first time that’s happened since Jan. 19, 2018, in an 81-73 win over Cal State East Bay.

Jiday Ugbaja — whose younger brother Chimae, is among the stars on a loaded Archbishop Riordan team —  led the Gators with 19 points, one shy of his career best, while adding six assists and five rebounds.

Junior forward Jase Wickliffe set a career high with 17 points in the win. Senior Matt Arrivas also set new career highs with 15 points and nine rebounds, going 6-of-7 from the field, and adding an assist and a block.

Senior center Ryne Williams scored 12 points and added five rebounds, while graduate student Jordan Balser added 10 with three assists and four boards.

The Gators led early, but a 15-0 run by the Golden Eagles flipped the script, and seven minutes in, San Francisco State trailed 18-9.

The Gators countered with a 7-0 run of their own to pull within four, and Balser scored five straight to cut the lead to one.

Ugbaja tied the game at 23-23 with a 3-pointer. and San Francisco State took a 37-36 lead into halftime.

The Golden Eagles started the second half on a 12-2 run, putting the Gators down by nine, but a Wickliffe three and a Niquis Garland put-back kept San Francisco State in striking distance.

After a Williams three to tie things at 55-55, the Gators went on a 19-9 run and never trailed again.

San Francisco State returns to Northern California on Jan. 12 for a 3 p.m. game at Sonoma State.

Ryan Gorcey
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Ryan Gorcey

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