May 8, 2007
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Forward Tom Garlepp, who spent the last two basketball seasons at UC Santa Barbara, will transfer across town to play his final two collegiate seasons at Westmont College, Gaucho head coach Bob Williams announced Tuesday. Because Westmont is a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), Garlepp will be eligible to play immediately.
Garlepp, a native of Perth, Australia, played two seasons at UCSB. As a sophomore in 2006-07, he played in 19 games and made seven starts. He averaged 3.4 points and 2.4 rebounds per game. Through the first eight games of the season, seven of which were starting assignments, Garrlepp averaged 6.0 points and 4.3 rebounds per game. He scored a season-high 11 points in a road win at Portland. He also had eight points and a career-high eight rebounds in a season-opening win over San Jose State and nine points in a win at Montana State. He also blocked 12 shots on the season, third on the team.
"I had a great time here," Garlepp said. "Things just didn't work out in terms of playing time. This will be an opportunity for me to play. I still have great relationships with everyone at UCSB, the players and the coaches, but I am excited for the opportunity to play for Coach (John) Moore and Westmont."
In his first season at UCSB, Garlepp played in 26 games and averaged 2.3 points and 2.1 rebounds per game. He scored a career-high 16 points against San Francisco, his first collegiate game. He also had a clutch 11-point performance in a home win over Long Beach State.
"I wish Tom all the best in his future," commented Williams. "He will be an outstanding addition for Westmont, not just as a player, but as a person as well. He was a great teammate here and he will be there as well."
Garlepp, who plays primarily the four spot, but also played at the five for UCSB, saw his playing time diminish as the 2006-07 season evolved. He began the season as the starter at the five but the emergence of junior Ivan Elliott and the return of senior Glenn Turner forced him into a reserve role at the four, playing behind All-Big West forward Chris Devine.
Despite the loss of Garlepp, the Gauchos should be well-stocked as they enter the 2007-08 season. Joining Devine and Elliott in the frontcourt will be 6-foot-9 Weber State transfer Nedim Pajevic and 6-foot-9 redshirt freshman Sam Phippen. In the backcourt, UCSB will return 6-foot-6 Alex Harris, a First Team All-Big West selection and the league's leading scorer in 2006-07, as well as James Powell and Justin Joyner, both members of the 2006-07 Big West All-Freshman Team.