Johnson Scores 31, Gauchos Get Defensive in 59-47 Win at UC Riverside
Feb. 10, 2011
RIVERSIDE, Calif. - Orlando Johnson scored 31 points, including 19 in the first half, to lead visiting UC Santa Barbara to a 59-47 win at UC Riverside on Thursday night. The win was the Gauchos' second in a row.
With his 31 points, Johnson became the 25th player in school history to score 1,000 points. He now has 1,006.
UCSB (13-9 overall, 6-5 Big West) limited UCR (9-13 overall, 4-6 overall) to 32.1% shooting overall, including 18.5% in the second half. The Highlanders only three-point basket came as the buzzer sounded to end the first half and they finished 1-for-9 from outside the three-point arc.
"Our defense was better tonight," said Gaucho head coach Bob Williams. "I thought we rotated better than we have been and played with a lot of energy. I thought we really competed tonight. Some of the adjustments really helped us and from this point forward I think we'll just get better and better."
The Gauchos trailed 8-3 early but used a 15-0 run to claim an 18-8 lead. The lead ultimately reached 30-17 on a three-point basket by Johnson with 3:42 left to play, but Daymond Cowlah's three-pointer at the halftime buzzer completed a 10-1 Highlander rally to make the score 31-27 at the break.
UCSB held Riverside to two points over the first eight minutes of the second half and led 38-29. The advantage never dropped below six the rest of the way and was extended to 15 twice.
Johnson was 7-for-13 from the field and 12-of-13 from the free throw line. He hit a career-high five three-pointers, all in the first half. James Nunnally added 14 points for the Gauchos, who shot 43.2% overall and made 19-of-22 from the free throw line, 86.4%. Greg Somogyi had four blocked shots in just 14 minutes of play.
Riverside was led by Javon Borum who had 14 points and Kevin Bradshaw who added 13. Borum was held to just 4-of-17 from the field and missed all five of his three-point attempts. Phil Martin, the Highlanders' leading scorer at 14.0 point per game, was limited to just four.
UCSB returns to action on Saturday, Feb. 12 when it travels to UC Irvine for a 5:30 p.m. game against the Anteaters. The game will be televised on Fox Sports West in Southern California and can be heard live on AM 1290 KZSB and on-line at NewsPress.com.
The Gauchos return home on Wednesday, Feb. 16 to host Cal State Fullerton at 7:00 p.m. The next "Legend of the Dome" will be introduced and his banner unfurled at halftime of the game against the Titans. To purchase tickets, please call (805) 893-UCSB, visit the Ticket Office located inside the Intercollegiate Athletics building on campus or buy online and print at home by clicking here.