UCSB Travels to Cal Poly Monday for Big West Opener

Greg Somogyi (Photo by Matt Brown)
Greg Somogyi (Photo by Matt Brown)

• The Schedule 
Game No. 11
Monday, January 2, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. 
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos at Cal Poly Mustangs

at Cal Poly's Mott Gymnasium
Radio: AM 1290 KZSB in Santa Barbara
TV: KSBY-TV - Channel 6 on the South and Central Coasts
On-Line Audio: UCSBgauchos.com
On-Line Video: BigWest.org

Game No. 12
Thursday, January 5, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. 
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. Cal State Fullerton Titans

at UCSB's Thunderdome
Radio: AM 1290 KZSB in Santa Barbara
Livestats: UCSBgauchos.com
On-Line Audio: UCSBgauchos.com
On-Line Video: BigWest.org

• Williams Remains Tied With Pimm For All-Time Victory Record
On Tuesday Dec. 13, UC Santa Barbara held on to win at the University of San Diego, 65-61.  The victory in the Gauchos' first road game of 2011-12 was also the 222nd of head coach Bob Williams' tenure at Santa Barbara, tying him with Jerry Pimm for the most in school history.  Williams, who now has a 222-174 record, is in his 14th season in charge of the program.  Pimm achieved his wins over 15 campaigns.

• The Gaucho Record
UCSB is 5-5 after dropping an 89-75 decision at BYU on Dec. 22.  The Gauchos have lost three straight games (at Washington, at Cal and at BYU) and five of the last six.  After opening the year with a 4-0 record, UCSB lost consecutive games to San Diego State (76-75 in overtime) and UNLV (94-88 in two overtimes).  

• UCSB Travels To Cal Poly Before Returning Home
The Gauchos were originally scheduled to open Big West Conference play on Dec. 29 at Long Beach State, but ESPN changed those plans, moving the game to Feb. 22, and thus, they will open league play at Cal Poly on Monday, Jan. 2.  The game will be UCSB's first since it played at BYU on Dec. 22.  On Thursday, Jan. 5, the Gauchos return to the Thunderdome for a 7:00 p.m. game against Cal State Fullerton.  It will be their first home game since they dropped a double overtime game to UNLV on Nov. 30, a span of 35 days.

• Gauchos Picked To Finish Second In Big West
UCSB was picked to finish second in the Big West Conference's regular season standings in a November poll of the league's media.  The Gauchos received four first-place votes and totaled 196 points.  Long Beach State, the 2011 regular season champion, earned 20 first-place votes and tallied 212 points.  Cal Poly (158 points), Cal State Fullerton (131 points) and UC Riverside (114 points) rounded out the top-five.

• Johnson Becomes Eighth Gaucho To Score 1,400 Points; Nunnally Is Next
During the four-game road trip that was completed at BYU on Dec. 22, Orlando Johnson became the eighth player in school history to move past the 1,400 point mark.  He tallied 22 in the trips finale against the Cougars and now has 1,424 in his career, sixth all-time.  The only other player to score 1,400 or more in fewer than four seasons was Doug Rex (1968-71) who finished his career with 1,434.  James Nunnally also scored 22 at BYU and in doing so, moved into UCSB's all-time top-10 in scoring.  He enters league play with 1,358 points and needs 42 to become the ninth player in school history to hit the 1,400 point mark.

• Probable Starters - Quick Fact
F 0 Jaimé Serna - Has made 36-of-49 shots from the field over the last eight games.
G 10 Kyle Boswell- Made his first start of the season on Dec. 22 at BYU and scored 10.
F 12 Lewis Thomas - Made first career start on Dec. 22 at BYU and didn't attempt a shot.
F 21 James Nunnally - The only Gaucho to score in double-figures in all 10 games.
G 33 Orlando Johnson- Needs 11 points to move into fifth on all-time UCSB list.

• Probable Reserves - Quick Fact
G 1   Nate Garth - Came off the bench for the first time on Dec. 22 at BYU. 
F 5 Keegan Hornbuckle- Has averaged 16 minutes over the last three games.
G 11 T.J. Taylor - Has had two or more assists in eight out of 10 games.
F 15 Alan Williams - Played a season-high 14 minutes on Dec. 22 at BYU.
F 24 Christian Peterson - Came off the bench and played season-low six minutes at BYU. 
G 43 Duke DaRe - Walk-on from De La Salle HS has yet to play in a game this season.
C 55  Greg Somogyi - Has 14 rebounds in last three games, a total of 28 minutes.

• On The Margins
UCSB won its first four games of the season by an average margin of 23.5 points per game and lost its last two by an average margin of 17.5 points per game, a margin-swing of 51 points.  The four games in between were decided by a total of 18 points.  When the Gauchos won their first four games of the season, the smallest margin of victory was 14 in a win over the University of Portland.  In their two most recent games they lost 70-50 at Cal on Dec. 19 and 89-75 at BYU on Dec. 22.  Despite the major swing in the last two games, UCSB is still outscoring its opponents by an average of 5.0 points per game.  

• The Roaring 80s
UCSB is averaging 76.1 points per game, a major improvement over the 67.8 points per game it averaged in 2010-11.  The 50 points the Gauchos scored in their Dec. 19 loss at Cal not withstanding, they have been a good offensive team through the preseason part of the schedule.  In their Dec. 16 loss at Washington, they scored 80 points, marking the fifth time they have eclipsed the 80 point barrier this year.  Last season, in 34 games, the Gauchos hit or exceeded 80 points just four times.  The last time they scored 80 or more points in five or more games in one season was in 2009-10 when they did so exactly five times.  That season, the fifth time came in the season's 21st game.  With 75 points at BYU on Dec. 22, UCSB has now scored 74 or more in eight of 10 games this season

• The Three-Point Spectrum
For the first time this season, UCSB has a lower three-point field goal percentage than its opponents.  The Gauchos have suffered through a three-point shooting slump in the last two games and have seen their overall three-point percentage drop to 34.6%.  In the last two games, Santa Barbara has made 8-of-33 shots from beyond the three-point arc, 24.2%.  On the other hand, in the last three games opponents made 25-of-50, 50.0%.  On Dec. 19, Cal made its first six three-point attempts and finished the game at 11-of-20, ,55.0%, the highest mark by an opponent this season.  In that same game, the Gauchos had their worst three-point shooting performance of the year, going 2-for-13, 15.4%. 

• Half And Half
UCSB has scored 30 or more points in 18 out of 20 halves this season.  Both of the Gauchos sub-30 halves came at Cal.  They scored a season-low 23 in the first half against the Golden Bears and 27 in the second half.  When they scored 43 in the second half at BYU on Dec. 22, it was their eighth 40+ half of the season.   

• Costly Throws
Since making a season-best 85.7% from the free throw line on Dec. 13 at San Diego, UCSB has gone into a free throw shooting tailspin.  In the last three games, the Gauchos went 23-of-39 from the charity stripe, 58.9%.

• Johnson Makes His Points
On Dec. 22 at BYU, Orlando Johnson made his first start at point guard for the Gauchos and bounced back from his toughest game of the season.  Johnson, who scored just nine points on 4-of-13 shooting on Dec. 19 at Cal, finished with 22 points (10-of-16 shooting), nine rebounds, two assists and a blocked shot in the game at BYU.  Also of significance was the fact that the senior had just one turnover in 34 minutes.  Johnson continues to lead the Big West in scoring at 21.0 points per game.  The 22-point performance in Provo marked the seventh time in 10 games this season that he has scored at least 20 points in a game.  Johnson scored a season-high 36 points while adding 10 rebounds , four assists, three steals and a pair of blocked shots in UCSB's double-overtime loss to UNLV on Nov. 30.  The 36 points were his second highest total ever and the double-double was one of four that Johnson has recorded this season.  In addition to UNLV, he had double-doubles against Washington (24 points and 10 rebounds), Portland (26 points and 12 rebounds) and Westmont College (20 points and 12 rebounds).  Johnson has now scored 10 or more points nine times in 10 games this season and 70 times in 72 games during his career.  He not only leads the Gauchos in scoring (21.0 ppg), but also in rebounds (7.3 per game) and assists (2.8 per game).  Since collecting a total of five rebounds through the first two games, he has had 68 in the last eight games, 8.5 per game.  The 22 points that Johnson tallied at BYU pushed his UCSB career total to 1,424 ranking him sixth on the school's career scoring list.  He needs just 11 points to move into fifth all-time.  If the 383 points that Johnson scored as a freshman at Loyola Marymount are factored in, he has now tallied 1,807 in his collegiate career.  Recently, the only sore spot for Johnson has been free throw shooting.  Normally a very dependable free throw shooter, he missed all four of his attempts in the last game and has gone 6-of-15 (40.0%) in the last three games. 

• Second To Nunnally
Senior James Nunnally is coming off of one of his best games of the season.  On Dec. 22 at BYU, Nunnally responded to consecutive season-low 10 point performances by making 9-of-13 shots overall, including 1-of-3 from three-point range, and scoring 22 points.  He also collected seven rebounds, three assists and a pair of steals.  He is now averaging 16.8 points and 5.9 rebounds per game, ranking second on the team in both categories.  Nunnally is the only UCSB player to score 10 or more points in all 10 games this season and the 22 he had at Provo gave him four 20+ scoring efforts this season.  Also, by scoring 22 in the last game, he moved into the school's top-10 for career points with 1,358 and needs just 42 more to become the ninth player in school history to move past the 1,400 point mark.  If/when Nunnally does achieve 1,400 points, it will be the first time in school history that two players have exceeded 1,400 career points in the same season.  When Nunnally scored 20 and 24 in the first two games of the season, it marked the first time he has scored 20 in back-to-back games since mid-February of last season.  He has had a season-high eight rebounds four times this season and he's had five or more eight times in 10 games.

• Making A DisSERNAble Difference
Jaimé Serna had another solid offensive effort in UCSB's Dec. 22 game at BYU.  Serna scored 12 points on 5-of-8 shooting against the Cougars.  It was the sixth time in 10 games that he has scored in double-figures and he is now averaging 10.7 points per game, third on the team.  On Dec. 13 at San Diego, in the first game of the Gauchos' four-game, 12-day road trip, Serna scored a career-high 22 points and tied a career-high with five blocked shots.  He also swatted a USD lay-up attempt in the closing seconds to secure the win.  Serna has attempted just 58 shots in 10 games this season, 5.8 per game, and made 41 of them, 70.7%.  In the last eight games, he has hit 36 out of his 49 attempts, 73.5%. In three of the last eight games, Serna has been perfect from the field.  He went 4-for-4 vs. Westmont and then had 5-for-5 efforts against Portland and UNLV.  In a Nov. 22 win over Portland he tied his career-high with 10 rebounds and had 15 points to record his second career double-double.  Serna is also third on the team in rebounds at 3.9 per game, but he has had just five in the last three games, a span of 68 minutes.  He also ranks second in blocked shots with 14 and has had at least one in six straight games. 

• Who's The Bos?
Guard Kyle Boswell scored 10 points on Dec. 22 at BYU, ending a streak of six straight single-digit scoring games.  Boswell, who made his first start of the season at Provo, added a career-high four assists against the Cougars.  He is averaging 7.8 points per game, fourth on the team, and he continues to lead UCSB in three-point field goal percentage at 42.1%.  Boswell is second on the team with 16 three-point baskets and has made at least one in four straight and nine times in 10 games.  He hit a pair at BYU and has two or more five times and season-high three in wins over Chapman and Westmont.  Boswell tied what was then his career-high with 11 points in the Nov. 11 opener against Chapman.  He then set new career-highs in the next two games, going for 12 on Nov. 15 vs. Santa Clara and 15 on Nov. 18 against Westmont.  Overall, Boswell is shooting 48.1% from the field and he has made 10-for-16 from inside the three-point arc, 62.5%.

• Hornbuckle Increases His Role
Sophomore Keegan Hornbuckle, a transfer from Colorado, battled injuries as a redshirt in 2010-11, during the summer and early this season.  In recent games, however, his role has increased.  After playing in two games for a total of 13 minutes through the season's first seven games, Hornbuckle has played 48 in the last three, 16.0 per game.  In those 48 minutes, he scored 18 points, 6.0 per game, and had five steals, 1.7 per game.  On Dec. 16 at Washington, he had 11 points, two rebounds, two assists and three steals in 17 minutes.

• Somogyi Makes Most Of His Minutes 
Senior Greg Somogyi hasn't played a lot of minutes in recent games, but by and large he's made the most of the minutes he has played.  In the last four games, Somogyi has totaled 35 minutes and although he scored just 12 points in those 35 minutes, he has also collected 18 rebounds and blocked eight shots.  On Dec. 16 at Washington, he played 12 minutes and scored a season-high seven points while collecting six rebounds and blocking two shots.  Somogyi has, in fact, had four or more rebounds in five straight games, never having played more than 13 minutes in any.  Also, with his two blocked shots on Dec. 22 at BYU, he now has 21 on the season and 158 in his career, second on UCSB's all-time list.  Somogyi blocked a season-high six shots in just 15 minutes on Nov. 26 against San Diego State.  He also had five on Nov. 15 against Santa Clara and now has five or more 10 times in his career, also second in school history. Finally, the 7-foot-3 Hungarian holds UCSB's all-time record for blocks in a game with eight on Feb. 20, 2010 at Fresno State.

• Point Guard Tag-Team
Junior Nate Garth, a transfer from New Mexico, and freshman T.J. Taylor have been a tag-team for UCSB at the point this season.  With Orlando Johnson moving into the point guard slot as well, the roles of Garth and Taylor may change.  Statistically, the duo is nearly identical.  Garth is averaging 3.5 points, 2.6 assists and 2.3 rebounds in 20.6 minutes per game.  Taylor is averaging 4.0 points, 2.2 rebounds and 2.6 assists in 19.4 minutes per game.  However, in two games since scoring a season-high eight points on Dec. 16 at Washington, Garth has struggled.  In losses at Cal and BYU, he missed both of his field goal attempts while passing off for just two assists and committing seven turnovers in 26 minutes.  Prior to the last two games, he had just nine turnovers in 180 minutes.  Garth is now shooting just 30.0% overall (12-for-40) and 19.0% from three-point range (4-of-21).  Taylor has also slumped offensively.  Since he scored a high of 10 points on Nov. 30 vs. UNLV, he has totaled nine points in four games, 2.2 per game and made just 3-of-12 shots, 25.0%.  He too is suffering through shooting woes, making 31.1% overall (14-of-45) and 28.6% from three-point range (8-for-28).  Taylor does, however, rank third on the team with eight three-point baskets and he's made at least one in three straight and five of the last six.  Taylor's assist-to-turnover ratio of 2.4-to-1.0 ranks first on the team.

• Mr. Productive
Freshman forward Alan Williams played a season-high 14 minutes on Dec. 22 at BYU.  Williams is now averaging 7.9 minutes per game and if there is one thing that stands out about him, it's that he generally makes the most of his minutes, particularly when it comes to rebounding.  He is averaging 2.9 points and 3.9 boards per game, but he has had at least one rebound for every two minutes played in games against Chapman (5 rebs., 7 mins.), Santa Clara (4 rebs., 8 mins.), Westmont (2 rebs., 3 mins.), Portland (8 rebs., 12 mins.), San Diego State (6 rebs., 12 mins.) and Cal (6 rebs., 9 mins.).  In all, Williams has 35 rebounds in 71 total minutes.