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The Hornet

The Hornet

Serving the Fullerton Community Since 1922

The Hornet

Bench leads the way in Hornets victory over Pirates

Fullerton uses a multitude of runs to secure a lopsided win against Porterville inside The Hornet’s Nest.
Matthew Gonzalez
Hornets’ freshman guard Addy G’Bye looks to jab step to create some space from Pirates’ freshman guard Jesse Freeman on Nov. 7, 2023.

Sophomore guard Jaden Byers and redshirt freshman guard Addy G’Bye sparked a Hornets second half surge at home to dominate the Porterville Pirates, 77-47 on Tuesday night.

Both guards had eerily quiet first halves with Byers scoring just four points and G’Bye not scoring at all. The duo went on to combine for 26 points in the second half.

Byers, a transfer from University of Pacific, finished with 16 points and two steals, as G’Bye finished with 14 for the game. Safe to say the two made their presence felt, showing the scoring depth this Hornets team contains.

Hornets’ sophomore guard Jaden Byers attempts to score by splitting between Pirates’ sophomore guard Akeives Shorts (left) and freshman forward Owen Patterson (right) on Nov. 7, 2023. (Matthew Gonzalez)

Fullerton came out strong starting the game on an 8-2 run, but the Pirates got right back in it, cutting the lead to just one with a score of 11-10. That’s the closest Porterville got the rest of the night.

The Hornets surged into the halftime break with a 28-18 lead thanks to a 10-0 run to close out the remaining first half minutes. Sophomore guard Amound Anderson led the way with 11 points, going 4-7 from the field.

Fullerton struggled to shoot the rock once again in the first half, shooting just 35.7% from the field and 25% from three-point range. But a stellar defensive performance allowed the Hornets to maintain a comfortable lead.

The Hornets came out strong in the second half, playing great on both ends. The half was sparked by multiple strong runs.

Hornets’ freshman forward Shawn Woodson made a layup at the 2:52 minute mark to officially put the Hornets up 30 points, giving them their largest lead of the early season.

The Hornets outscored the Pirates 49-29 in the second half, shooting a whopping 70.4% from the field and 50% from three-point territory. The Hornets needed a big second half to pull away, and the whole team stepped up.

“I thought we did a good job defensively following the game plan. We made them take tough shots and turn the ball over,” said sophomore guard Justyn Hunter. “[Offensively] I thought we did a way better job spreading the ball and knocking down shots and staying patient in the second half.”

Hunter totaled six assists and four rebounds on the night. Although he did not score, he made a huge impact for the Hornets offensively and defensively.

Fullerton sophomore guard Justyn Hunter dribbles right looking to get to the rim or create offense for his teammates while being pressured by Pirates’ sophomore guard Raven Ortiz on Nov. 7, 2023. (Matthew Gonzalez)

Freshman guard Christian Watson has now stacked two solid games in a row, scoring 11 points with four rebounds against the Pirates. He has proven to be more than just a rookie that is trying figure things out, but rather he has been able to contribute to his team right away.

“I just know how important it is that… if I do my part and everybody else does their part, we have a great team and a good shot at winning,” said Watson.

Porterville (1-2) had three scorers in double digits: sophomore guard Akeives Shorts dropped a team high 16 points, sophomore guard Raven Ortiz recorded 11 points, and freshman forward DeMarcus Allen added 10 points.

Those three combined for the majority of Porterville’s points, as the Pirates had only two other players enter the scoring column.

Fullerton (2-0) hopes to keep the energy going this weekend when they visit San Diego City College for the annual crossover tournament. In terms of winning another championship, the Hornets continue the plan of taking it one game at a time.

“I would say, let’s just follow our blueprint and trust it. A lot of times when everybody isn’t on the same page, it is hard to meet one goal,” said Watson. “Just having everybody else on the same page, same mindset and same drive, is really big time. When everybody is bought in, we’re going to be a hell of a team to compete with, and we’ll have a shot to take it all the way.”

The Hornets head down south for a matchup against West Valley College in their first game of the San Diego City Crossover tournament at 1 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 9.

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About the Contributor
Matthew Gonzalez, Staff Reporter
Matthew Gonzalez is a second semester staff reporter for The Hornet. Aside from being a staff reporter, he is also into sports photography. Matthew's passion in sports comes from watching and covering football, soccer, and basketball. During his free time he enjoys working out or listening to music. He is a huge Taylor Swift lover. Matthew plans on transferring to Cal State Northridge next fall to get a bachelors degree in Journalism.  His end goal is to work for a newspaper company.

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