Cal Poly won its first NCAA tournament game ever Wednesday night with an 81-69 victory over Texas Southern in the third of four first-round play-in games.
Both teams were No. 16 seeds, and the Mustangs (14-19) will play No. 1 seed Wichita State (34-0) in the second round of the Midwest Region on Friday in St. Louis.
After closing the first half with a 44-32 lead, the Mustangs extended their edge to 16 before a second-half run by Texas Southern made things interesting. But Cal Poly never led by less than five points in the final five minutes and hit its free throws to secure just the fourth victory by a team with a losing record in March Madness history.
Senior forward Chris Eversley led the Cal Poly offense with 19 points and nine rebounds. The Mustangs shot 56.1 percent from the field, and their bench outscored Texas Southern 29-20.
Senior center Aaric Murray scored a game-high 38 points for the Tigers in his final collegiate game. Texas Southern is now 0-5 all-time in NCAA tournament games.
Photo via Twitter/@CPMustangSports