December 15, 2012

Gauchos Cruise Past San Diego Christian, 87-60

SANTA BARBARA, Calif.Alan Williams had 24 points and 12 rebounds, and Kyle Boswell added 17 points and a career-high seven assists to pace UC Santa Barbara to an 87-60 win over visiting San Diego Christian on Saturday night.

Leading 19-14 with midway through the first half, the Gauchos (4-5) used a 27-10 run to go into halftime with a 46-24 lead.  Boswell scored 12 of his points in the first 20 minutes, making 3-of-5 three-point attempts.  As a team, UCSB made 8-of-18. 

"I thought we played with very good defensive intensity in the first half," said head coach Bob Williams.  "They (San Diego Christian) made some threes early, but the last 10 minutes we played very well." 

A pair of early three-pointers by Taran Brown helped the Gauchos push the lead to 52-26, but the Hawks (3-4) used a 9-0 run to close within 52-35 with 16:19 left in the game.  The lead stayed between 17 and 19 until San Diego Christian's Derek Dickerson made a three-pointer with 10:11 remaining, pulling his team within 16, 65-49. 

A driving lay-up by Boswell was answered by a short jumper from Derrick Thompson, making it 67-51.  Boswell then made a three-pointer from deep in the corner, his fourth of the night, to send the Gauchos on a 14-1 run that blew the game open, 81-52 with 5:03 left. The advantage never dropped below 25 the rest of the way. 

"Kyle really passed the ball well tonight," Williams said.  "He was seeing his teammates and getting them the ball in position to score.  When he is shooting the ball the way he is, they have to honor him on the perimeter and that allows others to open up."

Boswell made 4-of-9 three-point shots and has now made 15-of-27 in his last three games.  Not only did he have a career-high seven assists, he did so without committing a turnover.  As a team, the Gauchos had just 11.

"When we have fewer than 12 turnovers, that's a victory," Williams said.  "We took care of the ball tonight and it makes life so much easier." 

Brown added four three-pointers and 14 points for UCSB, which made as season-high 13 threes.  Overall, the Gauchos were 29-of-60 from the field, 48.3%.  The Hawks were led by Raphael Rodriguez who had four three-pointers of his own and scored 14 points.  As a team, San Diego Christian shot 37.3% overall after making just 25.9% in the first half.  UCSB dominated the rebound category, 44-25.

The Gauchos return to action on Tuesday, Dec. 18 when they travel to Berkeley for an 8:00 p.m. game against Cal.  The game will be televised on the Pac-12 Network.  UCSB will remain on the road for its final pre-Christmas game when it travels to Wyoming for a rematch with the Cowboys on Friday, Dec. 21.

Santa Barbara's next home game will be on Thursday, Jan. 3 when it hosts UC Irvine in a 7:00 p.m. game at the Thunderdome.  Tickets for that game, and all men's and women's home games, can be purchased by calling 805-893-UCSB (8272) or online by clicking here.

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