Dikymbe Martin scored 22 points to lead UC Riverside past Air Force, 67-48, Friday night in a non-conference men’s basketball game at the SRC Arena in Riverside, Calif.
After falling behind 9-0 to start the game, the Falcons battled back to take a 20-18 lead with 8:27 to play in the first half. The teams exchanged scores until UC Riverside broke a 26-26 tie with an 8-0 run over the last 5:15 of the half and take a 34-26 halftime lead. The Highlanders opened the second half with a 10-2 spurt to take a 44-28 lead with 13:54 to play. The run capped an 18-2 advantage over an 11:21 period that pretty much summed up the night for Air Force. UC Riverside went on to lead by as many as 21 points and the Falcons were never able to get closer than 15 points, 62-47, with 3:09 to play.
UC Riverside hit 53.2 percent from the field, including a 65.2 mark in the first half, and out-rebounded Air Force, 37-30. Air Force hit just 30.4 percent from the field, the second-lowest mark of the season. The Falcons were just 18.5 percent from three on 5-27 shooting. Air Force, who entered the game second in the conference in free throw shooting at 76.3 percent, hit just 52.9 percent from the line.
Chance Murray added 15 points, six rebounds and four assists for UC Riverside, while Kijkstra Menno chipped in with 12 points and 12 rebounds to help the Highlanders snap a four-game losing streak.
Air Force was led by Ryan Swan, who had a career-best 16 points and three rebounds in his first-career start. He started for an injured Frank Toohey, who didn’t make the trip. Trevor Lyons added 14 points and five rebounds while Ryan Manning added seven points and a team-best seven rebounds.
Air Force falls to 5-5 overall this season. UCR improves to 3-6. The Falcons return to action Sunday, Dec. 17, by taking on Army West Point in Madison Square Garden in New York.