Gauchos Travel to Hawai’i Saturday in One-Game Week

Marcus Jackson (Photo by Eric Isaacs)
Marcus Jackson (Photo by Eric Isaacs)

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Upcoming Games
Game No. 17
Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018 at 10:00 p.m. (PST)
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos at University of Hawai'i Rainbow Warriors

at UH's Stan Sheriff Center  - Honolulu, Hawai'i
TV: Spectrum Sports/
On-Line Audio:
On-Line Video:
Live Stats

Game No. 18
Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018 at 7:00 p.m. (PST)
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. Cal State Fullerton Titans
at UCSB's Thunderdome  - Santa Barbara, Calif.
On-Line Audio:
On-Line Video:
Live Stats

The Gaucho Record
UCSB will enter Saturday's game at Hawai'i with a 12-4 overall record and a 1-1 mark in Big West Conference play. After opening league play with a stunning loss at Cal Poly, the Gauchos rebounded with a 65-57 win over UC Riverside on Saturday, Jan. 6. The 12-4 start is the program's best since the 2007-08 season when it also began the year with a 12-4 record. That team ultimately set a school record with 23 wins. 

Jan. 20 UCSB-UC Irvine Game Moved to 9:00 p.m. for ESPNU
The UCSB-UC Irvine game originally scheduled for Saturday, Jan. 20 at 7:00 p.m. in the Thunderdome has been moved to 9:00 p.m. to accommodate an ESPNU broadcast. 

• 2017-18 is Officially Double the Fun 
A mere 16 games into the 2017-18 season, UCSB's win total of 12 is exactly double the total from the 2016-17 campaign. Last year's Gaucho team battled through eligibility and injury issues and struggled to a 6-22 record. The 22 losses were the most in the history of the program. Through 16 games last year, the team's record was 3-13.

Pasternack Off to Best Coaching Start in UCSB History
Joe Pasternack is off to the best start of any first-year head coach in UCSB history. Pastrnack's 12-4 record  through 16 games is four games better than the 9-7 mark that Art Gallon's Gaucho team posted in 1957-58.

UCSB Now No. 15 in Mid-Major Poll
UCSB enters the week ranked 15th in the latest Mid-Major Poll. The Gauchos are the only program from the Big West Conference receiving votes. West Coast Conference members Gonzaga and St. Mary's are ranked 1-2. San Diego, which UCSB defeated 67-57 on Dec. 2, is ranked No. 19. Montana and Montana State, both of whom were also beaten by the Gauchos, are receiving votes in the poll.  

Gauchos Bounce Back in Win Over UC Riverside, 65-57
UCSB rebounded from a difficult loss at Cal Poly in its Big West Conference opener with a 65-57 win over UC Riverside on Saturday, Jan. 6. The Gauchos led the Highlanders by as many as 24 points and were still up 56-33 when the visitors went on an 18-0 run to pull within 56-51 with 5:03 to play. At one point, UCSB missed 15 out of 16 field goal attempts. Max Heidegger, who went 5-for-8 from three-point range, made a pair of clutch threes and had a key steal to help Santa Barbara stem the tide late in the second half. Leland King II had game-highs of 22 points and 13 rebounds to lead the way. He tied his career-high with four three-pointers. As a team, after shooting a sparkling 56.7% from the field in the first half, the Gauchos went ice cold in the second half,making just 7-of-31 shots, 22.6%. In fact, while Heidegger and King combined to go 15-of-30 from the floor, including 9-of-17 from three-point territory, the rest of the team went 9-of-31 overall, 29.0%, and 2-of-11 from three-point range, 18.2%. Marcus Jackson added a game-high seven assists and Jalen Canty, who was limited to 21 minutes because of foul trouble, added three blocked shots. Gabe Vincent had seven points, a season-high five rebounds and four assists. Riverside was led by Alex Larsson who had 10 points and 11 rebounds. 

UCSB's Probable Starters
1 Leland King II - Tied career-high with 4 3-pointers vs. UCR...Has 9 double-doubles in the last 11 games.
2 Gabe Vincent  - With 7 points vs. UCR, now has 1,210 in his career, 18th in school history.
5 Jalen Canty - One game after scoring career-high 21 points, had season-low 2 vs. UCR.
21 Max Heidegger - Made 5 3-point baskets vs. UCR, the second most in his career.
55 Marcus Jackson - Played 36 minutes vs. UCR, his second highest total this year.

UCSB's Probable Reserves
0 Jarriesse Blackmon - Has missed the last five games with a concussion, but has been cleared to return.
10 Maxwell Kupchak - Played a combined 6 minutes in the last 2 games after playing 16 one game prior.
11 Brandon Davis - Made his first career three-point basket in the win over Pacific Union.
12 Alex Hart - After recording a DNP vs. Cal Poly, logged 7 minutes vs. UCR...Had 2nd steal of the year.
13 Sam Walters - DNP at in last 2 games...Logged a career-high 24 minutes vs. Pacific Union.
14 Ami Lakoju - Scored 48 of his 63 points in the last 8 games, making 22-of-32 field goals, 68.7%.
23 Christian Terrell - Has 2 or more assists in 6 consecutive games...Made 4 of his last 5 field goal attempts.
43 J.D. Slajchert - Played season-high 10 minutes and scored season-high six points vs. Pacific Union.

The Opponents
UCSB and Hawai'i have played 17 times in a series that began in 1959. The Gauchos have a narrow 9-8 advantage. In 2016-17, the teams split games with the Rainbow Warriors winning a 78-56 decision at the Stan Sheriff Center and UCSB winning a narrow 56-54 game at the Thunderdome. Hawai'i has won four of the last five times that the programs have met and have a 6-5 lead since moving into the Big West Conference for the 2012-13 season.

UCSB Away From Home 
The Gauchos are 5-4 away from home and 4-4 in true road games. They fell 80-79 at Cal Poly in their last road game on Jan. 4, but have still won five of their last seven games away from home, including four of their last six true road games.  

Making Their Points
One season removed from averaging 60.8 points per game overall and 57.1 per game in Big West Conference play, UCSB is leading the league in scoring with an average of 78.0 points per game, an figure that would be the program's highest since it also averaged 78.0 per game in 1974-75. The Gauchos scored 65 points in their last game, a Jan. 6 win over UC Riverside, ending a streak of six straight games of 79 or more. In those six games, they scored 91, 87, 87, 82, 81 and 79 points, a total of 507 and an average of 84.5 per game. Last season, Santa Barbara scored a season-high 76 points twice, in losses to Seattle and Long Beach State. This year, the Gauchos have eclipsed 76 points 11 times, 80 points eight times and 90 points twice. The last time the team had scored 80 or more in five straight games was in 1972-73. 

Double, Double, Toil and Trouble
On Jan. 6 against UC Riverside, graduate transfer Leland King II had 22 points and 13 rebounds. The double-double was his ninth of the season, all in the last 11 games, the most by a UCSB player since Alan Williams had 18 in 2013-14 and 2014-15. At one point, the native of Inglewood had five straight double-doubles, the most since 1989-90 when Eric McArthur turned the trick in six straight games. King now has another streak of four straight double-doubles as the Gauchos travel to Hawai'i. Jalen Canty is also turning into a solid double-double threat. On Jan. 4 at Cal Poly, he scored a career-high 21 points and added 10 rebounds for his fifth double-double of the season. This marks the first time since 1989-90 that the Gauchos have had two players with five or more double-doubles. That year, Eric McArthur produced 19 while Gary Gray added six. 

Getting Defensive
In its last game, UCSB limited UC Riverside to 38.1% shooting from the field and opponents are now shooting 42.4% overall through the first 16 games of the season. The Highlanders' 38.1% was also the 11th time in the past 12 games that a Gaucho opponent made 44.3% or fewer of its shots. The only opponent to have a higher percentage during that span is USC, which shot 56.7%. In the last 12 games, opponents have gone 308-for-753, 40.9%, a figure that would rank third in the Big West Conference.

League Leaders
In addition to being among the team leaders in several different categories, several Gaucho individuals rank among the Big West Conference statistical leaders. Max Heidegger ranks 1st in scoring, 1st in three-point field goals made, 7th in three-point field goal percentage and 3rd in minutes per game. Leland King II ranks 1st in rebounds, 3rd in three-point field goals made, 5th in three-point field goal percentage, 9th in free throw percentage, 1st in defensive rebounds and 8th in minutes per game. Jalen Canty ranks 1st in blocked shots, 3rd in rebounds, 3rd in field goal percentage and 1st in offensive rebounds. Gabe Vincent is 1st in assist-to-turnover ratio and 7th in assist average. Finally, Marcus Jackson is 2nd in assist average, 2nd in assist-to-turnover ratio and 6th in minutes per game.

Leadership Traits
Senior Jalen Canty scored a career-high 21 points on Jan. 4 at Cal Poly and in doing so, became the first UCSB player not named Max Heidegger, Leland King II or Gabe Vincent to lead the team in scoring this season. Through the first 16 games of the campaign, Heidegger has either led or tied for the team-lead 11 times, King has done so four times, while Vincent and Canty have each led the way once. 

UCSB's One-Two Scoring Punch 
Max Heidegger leads the Big West in scoring at 21.6 points per game while Leland King II is fourth at 17.1. Combined, they have 619 points, 38.7 per game. If UCSB plays 31 games (including one in the Big West Tournament) the Heidegger-King combo would finish with approximately 1,995 points. The program record for a duo is held by Orlando Johnson and James Nunnally who combined for 1,194 in 2010-11. 

UCSB Statistically in the Big West Conference
Category                     Stat                Rank
Scoring                       78.0 ppg          1st
Scoring Defense           71.0 ppg          4th
Scoring Margin             +7.0                1st
FG%                            47.1%             1st
FT%                            68.4%              6th
3-FG%                        38.8%              1st
FG% Defense               42.4%              5th
3-FG% Defense            34.7%              5th
3-Pt. Field Goals            8.3 pg             2nd
Reb. Margin                 +3.5 pg            3rd
Blocked Shots               4.6 bpg            2nd
Assists                         15.6 apg          1st
Steals                           4.9 spg            8th
Assist:TO Ratio              1.4:1              1st