February 1, 2006

Gauchos Try to End Losing Streak, Play Host to UC Davis in Non-Conference Game Thursday

Feb. 1, 2006

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The Schedule
Game No. 19
Thursday, February 2, 2006 at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. UC Davis Aggies
at UCSB's Thunderdome
Radio: KIST 1340 AM

Game No. 20
Thursday, February 9, 2006 at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos at UC Irvine Anteaters
at UCI's Bren Events Center
Radio: KIST 1340 AM

The Gaucho Record
UC Santa Barbara enters its one-game week with a 7-11 overall record and a Big West mark of 1-6. The Gauchos have dropped three consecutive games for the second time this season. They will try to avoid a season-long four-game losing streak when they host UC Davis in a non-conference game on Thursday night. Not only has UCSB dropped three in a row overall, it has also lost three straight home games for the first time since the 1998-99 season, Bob Williams' first season. In fact, in 1998, when the Gauchos lost four straight, they actually extended their losing streak to eight successive games over two seasons. Santa Barbara's most recent defeat was on Saturday to Pacific, 65-53. The Gauchos last win came on Jan. 15 at UC Davis, 64-50. The 1-6 start in Big West play is the worst by a Gaucho team in the eight years that Williams has been head coach and the worst since they opened 1-9 in league play in 1983-84. The Gauchos are 6-3 at home this season and 1-8 on the road.

UCSB Will Travel To San Jose State For Bracket Buster Game
UCSB has learned that its opponent in the Feb. 18 Bracket Buster competition will be San Jose State. The Gauchos and Spartans are old-time Big West rivals but have not played each other since the 1999-2000 season. San Jose State departed the Big West Conference for the Western Athletic Conference following the 1995-96 season. The programs have played exactly 100 times in a series that began in 1939. The 100 games is the most the Gauchos have played against any opponent. The Spartans have won 52 of the meetings.

Gaucho Rally Falls Short In 65-53 Loss To Pacific
UC Santa Barbara rallied from a 14-point first half deficit to take a five-point second half lead, but the University of the Pacific responded with a decisive 11-0 run and pulled away for a 65-53 win at Santa Barbara on Saturday night. The Tigers jumped out to a 7-0 lead in the first 1:14 of the game and ultimately piled-up a lead of 14 points at 35-21 with 2:52 to go in the first half. The Gauchos used an 8-3 rally in the waning minutes and went into halftime trailing 38-29. After UCSB forward Glenn Turner scored the first basket of the second half to narrow the gap to 38-31, Pacific forward Christian Maraker, who finished with a game-high 20 points, missed a shot and committed a turnover resulting in a short turnaround jumper by Chris Devine and a pair of Cecil Brown free throws to make the score 38-35 with 18:06 to go in the game. Neither team scored again until Devine hit back-to-back shots. The second of his baskets came with 15:38 remaining in the game and it capped a 10-0 rally, giving the Gauchos their first lead of the game, 39-38. UCSB increased the lead to 47-42 but Pacific then went on an 11-0 run to take a 53-47 edge. The Tigers never looked back. Brown led the Gauchos with 17 points. Devine added 12 and Turner had a career-high 11 rebounds.

Possible Starters - Notes
G - Alex Harris - Played a career-low eight minutes vs. Pacific. Has played 21 in last two.
G - Joe See - Has attempted just six shots in the last two games, a total of 52 minutes.
G - Cecil Brown - Has scored in double-figures in each of his last 16 games.
F - Chris Devine - Shooting 60.5% for the year but has gone 9-of-21 in last two, 42.9%.
F - Glenn Turner - Had a career-high 11 rebounds in loss to Pacific.

Possible Reserves - Notes
G - Josh Davis - Was scoreless in 31 minutes vs. Pacific and now has six points in four games.
G - Lance Hurdle - Played a season-low one minute in loss to Pacific.
G - James Powell - Freshman guard is redshirting the 2005-06 season.
G - Derek Rasp - Has scored just three points in his last six appearances.
G - Michael Chambers - Played 55 minutes in first 16 games and 34 in the last two.
F - Chidi Ajufo - Has played in just one of the last eight games.
F - Tom Garlepp - Did not play vs. Pacific. Scoreless in five games since going for 11 vs. LBSU.
F - Cameron Goettsche - Was not in the starting lineup vs. Pacific, a season-first.
F - Chris Moore - Has played a total of just one minute in the last six games.
C - David Massey - Freshman center is redshirting the 2005-06 season.

The Bob Williams File
Bob Williams is in his eighth season as the head coach at UC Santa Barbara. Last year his team struggled with injuries and finished 11-18 overall and 7-11 in the Big West Conference. It marked the first time that a Williams-coached UCSB team finished below the .500 mark in league play. During the 2004-05 season, however, Williams became the fifth UCSB coach to record 100 wins. Prior to last season, he had guided the Gauchos to three straight winning seasons, the first time the program accomplished the feat since 1987-88 through 1989-90. In 2002-03, Williams' Gauchos went 18-14 overall and 14-4 in league. The 2002-03 Big West mark earned Santa Barbara its first-ever Big West regular season championship along with a postseason trip to the National Invitation Tournament. Additionally, the success earned Williams his second Big West Coach of the Year award, his first coming after an impressive 1999 campaign. In 2001-02, Williams guided UCSB to its first Big West Conference Tournament Championship ever and first NCAA Tournament appearance in 12 years. Including this season, Williams' UCSB teams have posted a 114-108 (.514) overall record and a 74-53 (.583) record in Big West games. Prior to his arrival at UCSB, he spent eight years at UC Davis and in those eight years, his teams recorded 20 or more wins five times and a 158-76 record. In Williams' final season, the Aggies went 31-2, won the NCAA Division II National Championship and he was named NABC Division II Coach of the Year. Including two seasons at Menlo College, Williams has a record of 303-208 (.593) at four-year schools. He recorded his 300th career coaching victory on Dec. 20, 2005, against Sonoma State.

The Opponents
UCSB and future-Big West opponent UC Davis have played 11 times in a series that began in 1939. The Gauchos hold a 9-2 advantage over the Aggies, including a 64-50 win at Davis on Jan. 15. UCSB and UCD split a pair of non-conference games last season. The Gauchos won the game in Santa Barbara, 67-62 and the Aggies won in Davis, 72-63. UCSB and UC Irvine have played 52 times in a series that dates back to 1968. The Gauchos hold a 38-24 advantage. The Anteaters topped UCSB in the first meeting between the schools this season. On Jan. 9, UCI won in Santa Barbara by a score of 70-66. The teams split games last season with each team winning on its own court. UCSB won in Santa Barbara by a score of 62-45 and the Anteaters won in Irvine, 72-63.

The Gauchos At Home
After opening the season with six straight home wins to give them a seven-game home winning streak over two seasons, UCSB has dropped three straight Thunderdome games. The Gauchos are 6-3 at home this season. The three consecutive losses have come to UC Irvine, 70-66 on Jan. 9, Cal State Northridge, 59-46 on Jan. 26 and Pacific, 65-53 on Jan. 28. This season, UCSB has won home games against Long Beach State, Portland, Sonoma State, Pepperdine, San Francisco and San Diego. Although Santa Barbara struggled through the 2004-05 season, things were not that bad at home. The Gauchos went 8-4 at the Thunderdome, including 2-1 in non-conference games and 6-3 in league games. In three seasons prior to last year, Santa Barbara posted home records of 10-2 and the Gauchos have never won fewer than eight home games in a season under Bob Williams. Including its wins this season, UCSB is 71-29 at home since Bob Williams arrived for the 1998-99 season.

Missing: Gaucho Offense
Don't be surprised to find a picture of UCSB's offense on the side of a milk carton. What would a picture of UCSB's offense look like? Who knows, but it seems to have gone missing. The Gauchos scored a season-low 46 points in a 59-46 loss to Cal State Northridge last Thursday and then followed that up with a 53-point effort against Pacific on Saturday. On the season, Santa Barbara is now averaging 65.3 points per game. In the last five games, the Gauchos have scored 66 points or less and have averaged 58.2 points per game. In the last three, they are at 53.7 points per outing. The current scoring lull comes on the heels of a run of four out of five games in which UCSB scored 76 or more points.

To Make Them, You've Got To Take Them
There are a myriad of reasons UCSB has not scored many points lately. In the last three games, the Gauchos have struggled with their shooting, hitting 60-of-146 shots, 41.1%, but shooting isn't the only issue. UCSB just isn't taking a whole lot of shots. Santa Barbara has attempted fewer than 50 shots in each of its last four games and five times in its last seven. The Gauchos started the year attempting 50 or more shots in 10 of the first 11 games and 12 times in the first 14. Through 14 games, UCSB was averaging 55.3 field goal attempts per game and in the last four they have attempted an average of just 46.2 per game.

Bright Spot No. 1
Not all is gloomy for UCSB. The Gaucho rebounding has started to emerge as a positive. On the year, UCSB is now outrebounding its opponents by a +0.4 margin. While that statistic is not likely to send anyone scattering for the record books, it is a huge improvement over last campaign and a major step from where the team was earlier this year. After they were outrebounded 15-7 in the first half of Saturday's loss to Pacific, the Gauchos bounced back in the second half to win the battle of the boards, 28-27. UCSB has pulled-in more rebounds than its opponent in five straight games. During that span, the Gauchos have outrebounded their foes by 31 total rebounds, an average of +6.2 per game.

Bright Spot No. 2...Sort Of
While it is tough to get too excited after three contests, UCSB's free throw percentage in those games is a positive. After making just 16-of-31 free throws in the preceding two games, a paltry 51.6%, the Gauchos have nailed 25-of-31, 80.6%. That's the bright side. On the not-so-bright-side, UCSB attempted a season-low four free throws in Saturday's loss to Pacific and has averaged just 10.3 attempts in the last three games. While they have attempted more free throws than the opposition on the season (338-329), the last three opponents attempted 57 charity shots, an average of 19.0 per game or 8.7 more per contest than the Gauchos.

Our Turnovers
UCSB has had its two highest turnover totals of the season in the last two games. On Thursday night, the Gauchos coughed-up a season-high 25 turnovers, including 15 in the first half, during a loss to Cal State Northridge. On Saturday, against Pacific, they had 19 more turnovers, equaling their second highest total of the year. In the last two games, UCSB has averaged 22.0 turnovers per game. On the year, the Gauchos are now averaging 14.0 turnovers per game. In seven Big West games, UCSB is averaging 14.3 turnovers per contest.

Their Turnovers
While UCSB was turning the ball over 44 times in the last two games, its opponents were committing 26. In 18 games, Gaucho opponents have had 27 fewer turnovers, an average of just -1.5 per game. In Big West play, however, opponents have just 73 turnovers, 10.4 per game or 3.9 fewer per outing than UCSB. Four times this season the Gauchos have forced seven or fewer turnovers. On Jan. 9, UC Irvine had four turnovers and in the next league game for Santa Barbara on Jan. 21, Cal Poly had just two turnovers, the fewest ever committed by an opponent.

Help, Cecil! Help!
Senior guard Cecil Brown scored 17 points in UCSB's loss to Pacific on Saturday. For Brown, it was his highest point total in five games since returning to the lineup after missing a game with a strained medial collateral ligament in his left knee. It was also the most points he had scored since he tossed in 18 on Dec. 20 against Sonoma State. Brown is now averaging a team-leading 13.7 points per game and has scored in double-figures in 16 straight appearances, the longest streak by a Gaucho since B.J. Bunton opened the 1998-99 season by scoring 10 or more in 19 consecutive games. He scored a career-high 28 points on Dec. 7 against Pepperdine. It was the most points scored by a UCSB player since Mark Hull tallied 28 against San Diego State in a National Invitation Tournament game in 2003. Brown also leads the Gauchos with 31 three-point baskets, a career-high. He made a trio of three-pointers against Pacific and has hit 5-of-12 in the last two games. Brown has made at least one three-point basket in each of his last 16 games, the longest run by a UCSB player this season. In addition to his scoring feats, the rest of Brown's game has emerged this season. He had six rebounds against Pacific and is now averaging 4.1 per game. He has had five or more rebounds seven times in 17 games, including three of the last four. Brown also averages 2.2 assists per game, he has had two or more in five straight and eight times in his last nine games. He had a career-high eight rebounds on Dec. 23 at Fresno State.

Devine Is Fine
Although he has made "just" 9-of-21 shots in the last two games, sophomore forward Chris Devine is still leading the Gauchos and the Big West in field goal percentage at 60.5%. Devine is second on the team in scoring at 12.3 points per game, but in the last 11 he has seen his scoring average jump from 8.4 per game. In the last 11 contests, Devine has scored 162 points, 14.7 per game, the most of any Gaucho over that span. His current streak of 11 straight double-figure scoring efforts is the second longest by a Gaucho in the past three seasons. Only Cecil Brown's current 16 game streak is longer. Overall, he has scored 10 or more points in 14 of 18 games this season. He has tallied 20 or more a team-leading two times, including a career-high 21 on Jan. 2 at UC Riverside. In that game against, Devine also had a career-high 11 rebounds and it was the first double-double of his career. Devine has made at least half of his shots in 14 of 18 games and has made 60.0% or better 12 times, including five in a row prior to the last two games. Still, in the last 11 games, he has made 65-of-102 shots from the field, 63.7%. Despite having a total of just 13 rebounds in the last four games, Devine leads the Gauchos in that category at 5.1 per game. He has had seven or more rebounds seven times in 18 games this season, including his personal best of 11 at UC Riverside.

See-Saw
Senior guard Joe See scored just five points against Pacific and he totaled just seven points and six field goal attempts in UCSB's last two games. See is now averaging 7.6 points per game and prior to the last two games, he was one of the team's hottest offensive players. As a starter in the last 10 games, he has averaged 9.7 points, 3.0 assists and 2.6 rebounds per game. He tied his season-high with five assists vs. Pacific on Saturday. Also, in his 10 starts See has made 32-of-56 shots from the field overall, 57.1%, and 15-of-34 from three-point range, 44.1%. On the year, See has improved his overall field goal percentage to 48.9% and his three-point percentage to 43.1%. He had a season-high five three-pointers and scored a season-high 17 points in the opener against San Francisco. The Martinez, Calif., native has scored in double-figures nine times this season, including four of the last six and seven times in his 10 starts. Finally, with his 25 three-point buckets this year, See now has 112 as a Gaucho, eighth all-time.

The Harris Poll
For the first time since early in the 2004-05 season, sophomore guard Alex Harris was not in the Gauchos' starting lineup Saturday. In fact, Harris played a career-low eight minutes in the loss to the Tigers. In the last two games, he has played a total of 21 minutes, scored just one point, gone 0-for-4 from the field and committed five turnovers. The consecutive sub-par performances snapped a streak of four straight solid outings for the Alameda, Calif., native. In his four outings prior to last Thursday's game against Cal State Northridge, Harris had averaged 11.0 points per game, including a career-high 17 in a Jan. 7 win over Long Beach State, and made 13-of-26 shots overall, 50.0%, including 7-of-17, 42.0%, from three-point territory. Harris still ranks third on the team in scoring at 7.9 points per game despite seeing his scoring averaged drop below 8.0 for the first time this season. He is also averaging 4.2 rebounds per contest, fourth on the team, and 2.3 assists per game, tops on the squad. Also, Harris' first career double-double, a 14-point, 10-rebound performance on Nov. 21 against San Diego, was the first by a Gaucho guard since the 2002-03 season.

A Turning Point
Junior forward Glenn Turner made his first start of the season in Saturday's loss to Pacific and he was, without a doubt, one of the bright spots. Turner played a season-high 26 minutes, scored seven points while making 3-of-4 shots, and had a career-high 11 rebounds. He now has exactly 69 points and 69 rebounds on the year, averages of 4.6 per game, his highest mark of the season. In the last two games, Turner has collected 20 rebounds in 39 minutes, 10.0 per game. In his last four, the San Jose native has averaged 7.0 points and 7.7 rebounds per outing. He has also improved his field goal percentage to 61.9%. In the last five outings, Turner has made 14-of-18 shots, 77.8%. Going back further, he has made 20-of-27 shots, 74.1%, in his last eight games. On the year, Turner has five or more rebounds nine times, including the last four games.

Cam I Am
Senior forward Cameron Goettsche came off the bench on Saturday. It was the first time in 18 games this season that he did not start. Goettsche had six points and a season-low one rebound in 20 minutes of action. He did make 3-of-5 shots from the field. The Gaucho leader in blocked shots, he did not have one against the Tigers, ending a streak of 11 straight games with at least one swat. Goettsche is tied with Turner for second on the team in rebounding at 4.6 per game and he has had five or more 12 times this season, including five times in the last seven games. Goettsche scored a career-high 21 points on Dec. 20 in a win over Sonoma State. His other double-figure scoring game was on Jan. 9 against UC Irvine when he tallied 11.

Chamber Music
After playing just 21 minutes over a nine game span beginning with the Dec. 20 game against Sonoma State, senior guard Michael Chambers has played a total of 34 in the last two games. He logged a season-high 18 minutes against Cal State Northridge and then played 16 on Saturday against Pacific. In the game against the Tigers, Chambers had six points on a pair of three-point baskets. On the year, eight of his 12 field goals are from three-point range and, while he has made 38.1% for the year, he has made five of his last 10, 50.0%.

Just Joshing
Senior guard Josh Davis returned to the starting lineup against Pacific on Saturday. He played a solid defensive game in his 31 minutes of activity, but continued to have his problems at the offensive end. Davis missed all three of his field goal attempts, including his only three-point attempt, in the loss to the Tigers. On the year, he is now averaging 4.0 points per game and shooting 25.3% from the field. In five games since he had 11 points and was 5-of-10 from the field, Davis has scored a total of 12 points, 2.4 per game, and made just 5-of-26 shots from the field, 19.2%. On a positive note, he did have a season-high five assists in just 22 minutes against Cal State Northridge.