UCSB Hosts UC Davis Thursday; Lucius Davis Will Become Legend of the 'Dome Saturday Night

UCSB Hosts UC Davis Thursday; Lucius Davis Will Become Legend of the 'Dome Saturday Night

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• This Week
Game No. 22
Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. 
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. UC Davis Aggies

at UCSB's Thunderdome - Santa Barbara, Calif.
Radio: AM 1290 KZSB in Santa Barbara
On-Line Audio: UCSBgauchos.com
On-Line Video Stream: BigWest.TV

Game No. 23
Saturday, February 9, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. 
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. Univ. of the Pacific Tigers

at UCSB's Thunderdome - Santa Barbara, Calif.
Radio: AM 1290 KZSB in Santa Barbara
On-Line Audio: UCSBgauchos.com
On-Line Video Stream: BigWest.TV

Davis Introduced As Legend Of The 'Dome On Feb. 9
The Feb. 9 game will not only mark the final Big West regular season match-up between UC Santa Barbara and Pacific, it will also be the night that former Gaucho great Lucius Davis becomes the fifth men's basketball Legend of the 'Dome.  Davis (1988-92) helped lead the program to three postseason appearances, including its only Division I NCAA Tournament victory in 1990, and he was named Big West Player of the Year  and Honorable Mention All-American in 1992.  The banner saluting him will be unveiled at halftime of the game. Fans can purchase tickets for the Legend of the 'Dome night by clicking here.

• Single Game Tickets Available!
Single game tickets for all Gaucho men's and women's basketball games are now available and can be purchased in advance from the Ticket Office in the Intercollegiate Athletics Building on campus, by calling 805-893-UCSB (8272) or online by clicking here. Great seats for the showdown with Long Beach State, and for all games, are also available at the Thunderdome ticket office one hour prior to tip-off.

• On The Radio
All UC Santa Barbara basketball games are broadcast live in Santa Barbara on AM 1290 KZSB and will stream live online at UCSBgauchos.com and NewsPress.com. Gerry Fall is in his ninth year as the play-by-play voice of the Gauchos. Former Los Angeles Lakers and UCSB superstar Don Ford  and Santa Barbara News-Press legend Mark Patton handle the color commentary.

• Talk'n Gauchos
UCSB Athletics' weekly radio show, Talk'n Gauchos, airs every Tuesday from 6-7 p.m. on AM 1290 KZSB. The show is broadcast live from The Beachside Café, located on Goleta Beach and it features UCSB coaches and athletes.  Hosted by Gerry Fall, the voice of the Gauchos.  Fans can also catch Gaucho head coach Bob Williams every Thursday morning at 8:50 a.m. as he visits with Baron Ron Herron on "Bob and The Baron" on AM 1290.

Gauchos Host Sacramento State In Ramada World Wide BracketBuster Game
UCSB will host Sacramento State in a Ramada World Wide BracketBusters game on Saturday, Feb. 23 at 7:00 p.m.  The game against the Hornets will mark the Gauchos ninth, and final, appearance in the BracktBusters series.  In their first eight games, they have gone 4-4 with wins over Utah State, San Jose State, Fresno State and Montana State and losses to Detroit, Eastern Washington, Utah State and Boise State.

The Gaucho Record
UCSB enters Thursday's game against UC Davis with an overall record of 7-14 and a Big West Conference mark of 3-7.  The Gauchos have lost their last four games, including back-to-back road heartbreakers to Long Beach State (57-55) and UC Irvine (62-60).   

Injury Update: A Mixed Bag  
On Feb. 2 at UC Irvine, Alan Williams, UCSB's leading scorer and rebounder, returned to the lineup after missing three full games and most of a fourth with a strained left hamstring tendon.  He played 24 minutes before fouling out and had 22 points, eight rebounds, three steals and a blocked shot.  That's the good news.  There is also some bad news.  Nate Garth, the only senior on the team, pulled his left hamstring on Jan. 30 at Long Beach State and is out indefinitely.  He will definitely not play this weekend against UC Davis and Pacific.  In practice the day before the Gauchos' game at Irvine, freshman Mitch Brewe suffered a fractured left index finger and is, likely, out the remainder of the season.  Finally, Keegan Hornbuckle, who was just beginning to round into shape, came down on someone's foot in the game against the Anteaters and sprained his right ankle, forcing him to leave the game.  He too is out indefinitely.

Stirring Comeback Not Enough, Gauchos Lose At UC Irvine, 62-60
UCSB trailed by 20 points in the first half of its game at UC Irvine on Feb. 2 and was still behind by 19 after the Anteaters' Will Davis III scored on a slam dunk to begin the second half.  That's when the Gauchos went to work, battling back with a 37-18 run over a 19 minute span.  When Taran Brown scored on a baseline jumper with 21 second left, Santa Barbara had climbed the mountain, taking a 60-59 lead.  Irvine's Michael Wilder, however, responded with a three-point basket with eight second to play and then Kyle Boswell's three attempt at the buzzer bounced off the rim and Santa Barbara had lost its fourth straight game, 62-60.  Alan Williams, returning after missing almost four full games, led the way and the comeback with 22 points, eight rebounds and three steals before fouling out.  Boswell added 15 points whille Michael Bryson had 12.

Probable Starters - Quick Fact (Note: These are almost completely guesses.)
G 11 T.J. Taylor- His 2 assists at UCI were the fewest he's had in Big West play. 
G 10 Kyle Boswell - Has scored 10 or more in 5 straight, 8 of 9 and 14 of last 16.
F 15 Alan Williams - Had 22 points, 8 rebounds, 3 steals in return at UCI on Feb. 2.
G 24 Michael Bryson - Averaged 9.5 points in last eight games and had 12 at UCI. 
F 35 Taran Brown- 261 points are the 8th most ever by a Gaucho freshman.

Probable Reserves - Quick Fact
G 1   Nate Garth - Pulled hamstring on Jan. 30 at LBSU and is out indefinitely.
G 4 Aamahd Walker - Back injury will cause him to redshirt.
F 5 Keegan Hornbuckle- Sprained high right ankle on Feb. 2 at UCI and is out.
F 12 Lewis Thomas - Had career-high 11 at CSF on Dec. 29, has 6 points in 9 games since.
F 21 Mitch Brewe - Fractured finger on left hand will sideline him for the season.
G 32  John Green - Projected starter, broken bone in his foot has him sidelined indefinitely.
F 34  Shawn Moore - Made his only field goal attempt on Feb. 2 at UCI.
G 43  Duke DaRé - Logged career-high 20 minutes on Feb. 2 at UCI.
F 44  Sam Beeler - Has made 22 of his last 30 field goal attempts, 73.3%.

The Opponents
The Gauchos and UC Davis have played 25 times with Santa Barbara holding a 21-4 all-time edge.  UCSB won in Davis on Jan. 12, 66-59 and swept two games last season.  In all, the Gauchos have won nine straight games over the Aggies. UCSB and Pacific have played 107 games through the years with the Tigers holding a 54-53 advantage, including an 80-62 win on Jan. 10 in Stockton.  Prior to the January game, the Gauchos had won four in a row between the schools, including a 72-52 decision in the first round of the 2012 Big West Tournament.  UCSB also defeated the Tigers in the 2011 tourney.

The Gauchos At Home 
UCSB is 5-4 at home this season after dropping its most recent home games against Cal State Northridge and  Hawai'i. After opening the year with Thunderdome wins over The Master's College and the University of San Diego, the Gauchos lost a game to Wyoming.  On Dec. 15, they defeated San Diego Christian and on Jan. 3 they topped UC Irvine.  After a loss to Long Beach State, they bounced back with a Jan. 19 double-overtime win over Cal Poly. 

Williams Passes McCarthy For Third On Big West Conference Victory List
The Jan. 19 win over Cal Poly was the 143rd Big West Conference victory for head coach Bob Williams since his arrival at UCSB for the 1998-99 season.  The victory broke a tie with former New Mexico State head coach Neil McCarthy for third-place on the league's all-time list for conference wins.  Williams is 143-95.  With 244 overall wins as coach of the Gauchos, Williams is in fourth in that category, four behind McCarthy.  

Youth Is Served
The Gauchos' leading scorer is sophomore Alan Williams.  Their third leading scorer is freshman Taran Brown.  The fifth leading scorer is freshman Michael Bryson.  Of the 1,398 points that UCSB has scored through 21 games this season 977, or 69.9%, have been scored by freshmen or sophomores.  Of the team's 670 individual rebounds 567, or 84.6%, have been collected by freshmen and sophomores.  Also, of the team's 92 blocked shots 92, or 100.0%, have been recorded by freshmen and sophomores. Finally, of the 4,275 minutes played by all Gaucho players this season, 3,048 have been played by freshmen and sophomores, 71.3%.  

Gauchos Remain On Record Three-Point Pace
Despite making just 12-of-43 three-point attempts in its last two games, UCSB remains on a school record pace for threes.  Through 21 games, the Gauchos are averaging 8.65 three-point baskets per game, a pace that would equate to approximately 255 over a 30-game season.  The current record of 242 was set over a 32 game schedule in 2007-08.  On Dec. 29 at Cal State Fullerton, UCSB made a season-high 15 three-point baskets, the third highest total in school history and the most since it made 16 against Arizona in the first found of the 2002 NCAA Tournament.  One game after making a season-high 15, the Gauchos hit for season-best 50.0% (13-of-26) in a Jan. 3 win over UC Irvine.  They've made 10 or more eight times this year, but just once in the last eight games.

Marginally Different
The Gauchos began the year by playing six straight games decided by 14 points or more.  In fact, eight of their first nine, win or lose, were decided by 14 or more.  The last six games?  Not so much.  Each of the last six contests have been decided by seven points or fewer and three have been by two points.  Last weekend, UCSB dropped road games at Long Beach State and UC Irivine by two points each and both games were decided with under 10 seconds to play.  In fact, the Gauchos have lost four straight games by a combined 15 points, an average of 3.7 points per game.  Before the current run of three straight close losses, Santa Barbara was perfect in games decided by five or fewer points with wins over Santa Clara (three points in overtime), UC Irvine (three points) and Cal Poly (two points in double-overtime).      

The "Other" Williams
Sophomore forward Alan Williams returned to the Gaucho lineup at UC Irvine on Feb. 2 after missing three full games and most of a fourth with a strained left hamstring tendon.  He was injured in the first half of UCSB's Jan. 19 game against Cal Poly.  In his return against the Anteaters, Williams had 22 points, eight rebounds, three steals and a blocked shot in 24 minutes before fouling out.  He scored 15 of his points in the second half as the Gauchos rallied from 20 down to take a late lead.  It marked the seventh time this season that he has scored 20 or more points in a game and he has done so five times in his last seven appearances.  Prior to the game at Irvine, Williams' last 20 point game was on Jan. 12 at UC Davis when he had 28 points and 11 rebounds.  He has nine double-doubles on the season - the most since Kealon Wallace had 10 during the 1995-96 season - and 11 in his career.  The 28 points were just one shy of his career-high and the most he has scored in a non-overtime game.  Williams continues to lead the Gauchos in scoring (17.7 points per game), rebounds (9.8 per game) and blocked shots (2.3 per game).  Before going down with his hamstring injury, he was averaging a double-double.  The last Gaucho to finish the season averaging 10 or more points and 10 or more rebounds per game was Eric McArthur in 1990. On Dec. 1 at Santa Clara, Williams had a career-best game with 29 points and 17 rebounds.  That performance was the first time a Gaucho has had 25 or more points and 15 or more rebounds in the same game since Jan. 29, 1990 when McArthur had 28 points and 21 rebounds against Cal State Fullerton.  The 17 boards were the most by a UCSB player since Josh Merrill collected 18 against Westmont on Dec. 7, 1996. For his efforts, he was named Big West Player of the Week.  In all, Williams has scored in double-figures 16 times in 18 games.  Also, he has collected 10 or more rebounds 10 times.  In addition to his career-high 17 on Dec. 1 at Santa Clara, he had 16 in the Big West opener at Cal State Fullerton on Dec. 29.  Williams has 41 blocked shots this season.  He has at least one in seven straight and 15 overall.  In fact, he has two or more 13 times.  He has a high of five twice, once each against San Diego and UC Irvine.  With his one block at UC Irvine on Feb. 2, Williams now has 82, eighth in school history.

Taran It Up
Freshman Taran Brown had seven points and three rebounds in UCSB's game at UC Irvine on Feb. 2.  He also added a pair of assists.  Against the Anteaters, Brown played a season-low 18 minutes.  Prior to the game against the Anteaters, Brown had scored in double-figures in four straight games, equaling his longest such streak of the season.  Overall, he has tallied 10 or more points 15 times this year.  Brown is averaging 12.4 points per game overall, third on the team and the second highest ever for a Gaucho freshman. He has 50 three-point baskets on the season - a UCSB freshman record - ranking him second on the team.  On Dec. 29 at Cal State Fullerton, he made a career-high six three-point baskets and scored 20 points.  He has 20 or more three times.  Brown scored 22 and 20 in back-to-back games against Illinois State and The Master's College in mid-November becoming the first Gaucho freshman ever to score 20 or more in two straight games.  The 22 he had at Illinois State were the most by a UCSB freshman since James Nunnally had 22 against North Carolina on Nov. 21, 2008.  Brown has had three or more three-pointers 11 times this season. He's made at least one in 18 of 21 games. While he is averaging 5.7 rebounds per game, he had led the team in rebounding in four straight during Alan Williams' absence, averaging 7.2 over that span.  Brown has 21 blocked shots on the year, the fourth most by a Gaucho freshman.  Finally, he had the first double-double of his career with 20 points and 13 rebounds vs. The Master's College on Nov. 17.   

Who's The Bos?
Junior Kyle Boswell scored 15 points in the Feb. 2 game at UC Irvine and his scoring average is up to 13.1 points per game, matching his highest mark this season, not including when he scored 17 in the opener.  Boswell has scored in double-figures in five straight games, eight of nine and 14 of 16.   He has tallied a career-high 23 three times, most recently in a  Jan. 19 double-overtime win over Cal Poly.  In the game against the Mustangs, he scored six of his points in the final 1:10 of the second overtime, including a lay-up and free throw with nine seconds left.   He also scored 23 on Dec. 6 at San Diego State and Jan. 3 vs. UC Irvine.  In the game at SDSU, he made a career-best seven three-point buckets, the most by a Gaucho since Joe See made eight at Utah State on Jan. 6, 2005. On the season, Boswell has 56 threes, two more than he had in 31 games last season.  In 16 games since his scoring average dipped to a season-low 8.0 per game, Boswell has scored 235 points and averaged 14.7 per game, making 48-of-112 from three-point range over that span, 42.9%.  He had made at least one three-pointer in 16 consecutive games before a Jan. 26 game against Hawai'i.  He has now made one or more in 19 of 21 and two or more 16 times. Boswell  has 121 career threes in 288 attempts, 42.1%, the second highest percentage in school history. Finally, he has played 30 or more minutes in 10 consecutive games after doing so twice in the first 11 games of the season.

Taylor Made
Sophomore point guard T.J. Taylor has started the last nine games.  On Feb. 2 at UC Irvine, he was scoreless with two assists and no turnovers.  It was the first time in 10 conference games that he didn't have at least four assists.  Despite the two assist total at Irvine, Taylor is still averaging 5.9 assists per game in league play and he has a sparkling 3.3-to-1.0 assist to turnover ratio in league play.  On Jan. 26 against Hawai'i, Taylor scored a career-high 11 points while adding four assists and no turnovers.  On Jan. 5 vs. Long Beach State and Jan. 10 at Pacific, he had a career-high nine assists.  Taylor is averaging 4.0 points and 3.9 assists overall while shooting 41.9% and 38.3% from three-point range.  He has 18 three-pointers on the season and he's made two or more in seven games.

The Life Of Bryson
Freshman Michael Bryson scored 12 points and had four rebounds in the Feb. 2 game at UC Irvine.  The 12 points were three shy of his career-high of 15 set on Jan. 5 vs. Long Beach State.  In the previous game, Jan. 30 at Long Beach State, Bryson had nine points - including a game-tying three-pointer with 23 seconds to play - and tied his career-high with seven rebounds.   He is now averaging 6.3 points and 3.1 rebound per game.  In the last eight games, Bryson has averaged 9.3 points per game and in the eight games, he has hit 14 three-point baskets, including two or more five times. He made a career-high three three-point baskets in the Jan. 5 game vs. Long Beach. In all, Bryson has been in double-figures four times, including three of the last eight games.  He is averaging 23.3 minutes per game, but has averaged 26.3 in the last seven.  Bryson has played in 20 of the 21 games this season, missing the Nov. 17 contest against The Master's College with a strained back.  He is third on the team with 25 three-point baskets, the sixth most ever by a Gaucho freshman, and he has made two or more nine times.

The World According To Garth 
The team's only senior, Nate Garth, pulled his left hamstring on Jan. 30 at Long Beach State, missed the Feb. 2 game at UC Irvine and remains out indefinitely.  Garth logged just six minutes before injuring himself in the game against the 49ers.  Earlier in January, he missed two full games, and parts of two others, with a sprained ankle.  Garth is averaging 5.7 points and a team-leading 4.1 assists per game.  In his last full game, Jan. 26 vs. Hawai'i, he had eight points, eight assists and just one turnover.  Garth also had eight assists, to go with a season-high 13 points, in UCSB's Jan. 19 double-overtime win over Cal Poly.  His assist-to-turnover ratio of 2.2-to-1.0 is second on the team.  Garth had a career-high nine assists on Dec. 6 at San Diego State and has had five or more eight times in his 18 games.  

Buckling Down
Junior forward Keegan Hornbuckle has battled injuries since he transferred to UCSB from Colorado following the 2009-10 season, and he is doing so once more.  Hornbuckle sprained his right ankle in the Gauchos' Feb. 2 game at UC Irvine.  Earlier this season, he missed 13 of the first 15 games with a severely sprained left ankle.  In three games prior to the game against the Anteaters, however, he gave the Gauchos a glimpse of what can be.  In the those three games, Hornbuckle made 8-of-11 shots overall, 72.7%, and 4-of-5 from three-point range, 80.0%.  He averaged 7.3 points, 2.0 rebounds and one steal over that span.  The sprain of the right ankle, however, will keep him out indefinitely.

Into The Fire
With the injury to Alan Williams, freshmen forwards Mitch Brewe and Sam Beeler went from the frying pan into the proverbial fire.  Now, with Brewe injured and likely out for the season, Beeler is going to have to fend for himself in the fire.  If you include the Jan. 19 game against Cal Poly when Williams went down with about six minutes to play in the first half, the Brewe-Beeler combination has scored 53 points (13.2 per game) and grabbed 31 rebounds (7.7 per game), while making 22-of-33 shots from the field, 67.7%.  Also in the four games, Beeler has five blocked shots while Brewe has a block and three steals.  Williams is back, but Beeler will still play a major role.