SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – Dylan Royer scored 23 points and made seven three-point baskets, including five in the second half, as Cal Poly pulled away and beat visiting UC Santa Barbara on Saturday night, 67-49. Alan Williams led the Gauchos with 24 points, 17 rebounds and four blocked shots.
The win helped Cal Poly (12-11 overall, 8-5 in the Big West) end a six-game UCSB (8-16 overall, 4-9 in the Big West) winning streak in the Blue-Green Rivalry Series.
Royer's final two three-point baskets were his two biggest.
After Williams sparked a Gaucho rally that saw them carve a 17-point deficit to 55-49, Royer nailed back-to-back open three-pointers from deep in the left corner to push the Mustang lead back to 61-49 and that was as close as it got the rest of the way. Cal Poly made all of its free throws in the final minutes to extend the advantage to 18 at game's end.
"We didn't take advantage of some opportunities in the second half and that's what I feel bad about," said UCSB head coach Bob Williams. "I thought we showed some good things, cutting a 17-point lead to six, but then we made some silly turnovers and that was that."
The Mustangs, who led by as many as 10 points in the first half, saw the advantage dwindle to three, but an errant Gaucho pass after a rebound in the final seconds allowed Royer to make a buzzer-beating three-pointer to stretch the lead back to 29-21.
The Gauchos jumped out quickly in the second half with Kyle Boswell scoring on a driving lay-up and then a three-pointer from the top of the key, closing the gap to 29-26. However, on the next possession, Boswell slammed into a screen by Mustang center Brian Bennett and was forced to leave the game. He tried to come back, but after one possession he departed again, nursing his left shoulder.
Williams was outstanding for Santa Barbara. Questionable with a sprained ankle for much of the week, he not only played, he logged 33 minutes. He nearly had a double-double in the first half with nine points and nine rebounds and he was even better in the second half with 15 points and eight boards. It was his 11th double-double of the season.
"That was Alan being Alan," Coach Williams said. "He is so productive and such a weapon. I just wish we had played off of him a little better, especially in the second half."
UCSB limited Cal Poly to just 35.0% shooting overall, but the Mustangs made 11 three-point baskets and were 14-of-15 from the free throw line. With leaving the game in the second half, the Gauchos were just 3-of-14 from outside the three-point arc and they went to the line just nine times, making six.
Michael Bryson added 10 points for Santa Barbara before fouling out. Kyle Odister had 11 points - making three three-pointers in the second half - for Cal Poly.
UCSB returns to action on Wednesday, Feb. 20 when it travels to UC Riverside for a Big West Conference game that will tip-off at 7:00 p.m. The Gauchos return home on Saturday, Feb. 23 to host Sacramento State in a Ramada World Wide BracketBuster game at 7:00 p.m. in the Thunderdome. Tickets for that game, and all home games, can be purchased from the Ticket Office in the Intercollegiate Athletics Building on campus, by calling 805-893-UCSB (8272) or online by clicking here.