November 28, 2006

Brown Expected to Return as Gauchos Host Loyola Marymount Wednesday in Key Southern California Showdown

Nov. 28, 2006

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The Schedule
Game No. 6
Wednesday, November 29, 2006 at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos vs. Loyola Marymount Lions
at UCSB's Thunderdome

Game No. 7
Saturday, December 2, 2006 at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos at the University of Portland Pilots
at Portland's Chiles Center

On The Radio
All UC Santa Barbara basketball games are broadcast live in Santa Barbara on KTMS, 990-AM. KEYT-TV Sports Director Gerry Fall is in his third year as the play-by-play voice of the Gauchos. Former Los Angeles Lakers' and UCSB star Don Ford handles the color commentary for the majority of games, home and road. When Ford is not available for road games, Bill Mahoney, yours truly, will handle the task. Steve Wendt, the voice of the UCSB women's basketball team, will handle the play-by-play for a handful of men's games this season.

Scouting The Lions
Loyola Marymount will enter Wednesday night's game with a 5-2 record. The Lions most recently went 2-1 in the Great Alaska Shootout, losing in the championship game to Cal, 78-70. In the second round of the tournament, LMU defeated three-time defending Big West Champion Pacific in double-overtime, 88-85. The Lions are led by guard Brandon Worthy and forrward Matthew Knight who are averaging 21.0 and 17.7 points respectively. Knight is also leading LMU in rebounding at 8.6 per game while Worthy collects 5.6 boards per outing.

The Bob Williams Show
The Bob Williams show will be aired each Tuesday night from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on KTMS 990-AM in Santa Barbara. Coach Williams will talk about past and upcoming games, interview Gaucho players and welcome guests from the Santa Barbara sports community.

The Gaucho Record
UC Santa Barbara enters the week with an overall record of 4-1. After winning its first four games of the regular season, the Gauchos dropped a tough one Saturday afternoon. UCSB lost a 76-72 decision to San Diego State at the Thunderdome. The Gauchos opened the 2006-07 season on Nov. 10 with a 75-67 home win over San Jose State and then posted road wins at Montana State (88-56), UNLV (79-76) and Pepperdine (89-80 in double overtime). UCSB posted a 2-0 record in the exhibition season. The Gauchos recorded wins over UC San Diego (62-51) and Westmont College (76-68). Dating back to last season, UCSB has won 12 of its last 16 games overall and eight of its last 10 road games.

It Was Fun While It Lasted
Prior to its close loss to unbeaten San Diego State on Saturday, UCSB had opened the regular season with a 4-0 record for the first time since the 1992-93 season when it began with a 6-0 record. The 4-0 start was the first-ever under ninth-year head coach Bob Williams. Finally, the Gauchos have opened the year with a 3-0 record on the road. The last time they went 3-0 in true road games was also in 1992-93 when they won at Pepperdine, St. Mary's and Sacramento State. They will get an opportunity to go 4-0 on the road at Portland on Dec. 2.

Heath Leads Aztecs Second Half Rally
Senior guard Brandon Heath scored 29 points, including 23 in the second half, as unbeaten San Diego State rallied past UCSB, 76-72, Saturday at the Thunderdome. Heath helped the Aztecs overcome a 48-40 second half deficit to improve to 7-0. His four-point play with 11:35 remaining in the game narrowed the Gaucho lead from eight to four and sparked a decisive SDSU run. Heath also scored 12 points in the final 3:30 of the game. Junior guard Alex Harris led the Gauchos with 21 points, six assists and four rebounds. It was the fifth straight game in which Harris has scored 20 or more points. Freshman guard James Powell had 16 points, but he and junior forward Chris Devine, who had 14 points, spent a significant period of time on the bench in the second half with four fouls. Powell picked-up his fourth foul with more than 16 minutes to go in the game and he went to bench for more than eight minutes. Devine, who made 5-of-7 shots and led the team with seven rebounds, got his fourth foul with more than 11 minutes to play and he left for more than five minutes.

Brown Should Return Wednesday, Turner Still Out
UCSB should get a major boost on Wednesday against Loyola Marymount when senior guard Cecil Brown is scheduled to return after being sidelined for nearly six weeks with a stress fracture in his right foot. Brown, who led the team in scoring at 13.3 points per game last season, has been inactive since before the beginning of official practice on Oct. 13. He was in a walking cast for a couple of weeks and inactive for a few more, but he has started practicing again and should be a key re-addition. Senior forward Glenn Turner had surgery to repair a hernia on Nov. 9 and is still out indefinitely. He, like Brown, was penciled in as a starter as UCSB entered practice for the 2006-07 season.

Probable Starters - Notes
G - James Powell - Averaging 15.7 points in the last four games.
G - Alex Harris - First Gaucho to score 20 or more in five straight since 1997-98 season.
G - Justin Joyner - Scored season-high 11 points in loss to San Diego State.
F - Chris Devine - Has made 32 of his 46 field goal attempts in the last four games, 69.6%.
F - Tom Garlepp - Has taken over the team-lead with six blocked shots.

Probable Reserves - Notes
G - Cecil Brown - Has missed first five games but is expected back Wednesday vs. LMU.
G - Paul Roemer - Did not play in loss to San Diego State, his first DNP of the season.
G - Trevor Bing - Made all three of his shot attempts against San Diego State.
F - Ivan Elliott - Had 10 rebounds at Pepperdine and 10 in other four games combined.
F - Emmanuel Bidias a Mouté - Did not play against San Diego State, his first DNP of the season.
F - Beau Gibb - Is the only active Gaucho who has yet to make a field goal.
F - David Massey - Scored his first points and had his first rebound at Montana State.
F - Sam Phippen - Freshman forward will redshirt the 2006-07 season.

The Infirmary - Notes
F - Glenn Turner - Repaired hernia has him out indefinitely.

The Bob Williams File
Bob Williams is in his ninth season as the head coach at UC Santa Barbara. Last year his team overcame a slow start to finish over the .500 mark for the fourth time in five seasons. UCSB was 15-14 overall and 6-8 in the Big West. Prior to the 2004-05 season, when an injury-ravaged Gaucho team finished below .500, Williams had guided the program to three straight winning seasons for the first time since the late 1980s. 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 trip to the postseason 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 126-112 (.531) overall record and a 79-55 (.590) 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 315-212 (.598) at four-year schools.

The Opponents
UCSB and Loyola Marymount have played 78 times in a series that dates back to 1937. The Lions hold a 45-33 edge all-time, including an easy 77-60 home win last season. The last time the Gauchos and Lions met at the Thunderdome was on Dec. 30, 2000, and UCSB posted an 85-69 victory. The Gauchos and Portland have played eight times and each team has won four. The last meeting between the schools was on Dec. 28, 2005 in Santa Barbara and UCSB won that one, 76-63. The teams have not played in Portland since 1998-99, Bob Williams' first season, and the Pilots won that game, 78-73.

The Gauchos At Home
UCSB is 1-1 at home in 2006-07. The Gauchos defeated San Jose State on Nov. 10 and then lost to San Diego State on Nov. 25. UCSB went 9-4 in home games during the 2005-06 season and it was a perfect 6-0 in non-conference home games last season. Since Bob Williams became head coach in 1998-99, Santa Barbara has gone 74-30 in home games overall and 30-11 in non-conference home games. Since the 2000-01 season, UCSB has gone 22-5 in non-conference games at the Thunderdome. The Gauchos went 8-4 in home games in 2004-05, but in each of the three years before that, they finished 10-2 at the Thunderdome.

The Gauchos On The Road
UCSB is 3-0 in road games this season. The Gauchos opened the road portion of their schedule with an 88-56 win at Montana State on Nov. 13. On Nov. 17, they won at UNLV, 79-76 and on Nov. 21 they won at Pepperdine, 89-80 in double overtime. This marks the first 3-0 start in true road games since the 1992-93 campaign when the team jumped out of the gates with a 4-0 road record. UCSB posted a 5-9 record in true road games in 2005-06 and a 6-10 mark in all non-home games. While the 5-9 doesn't seem like much, it includes an 0-7 start and a 5-2 finish. The Gauchos opened the 2005-06 season with seven straight road losses, extending a two-season streak to nine straight road defeats. However, since the end of that streak, UCSB has gone 8-2 on the road.

Newcomers Dominate 2006-07 Gaucho Roster
UCSB opened the 2006-07 season with a vastly different roster than it finished the 2005-06 season. Gone are eight of the 13 players from last season's team. In their place are two redshirt freshmen, a transfer from a four-year school, two junior college transfers and four true freshmen. In fact, due to injuries, the Gauchos have had only three returnees play in the season's first five games. While that will change this week with the return of Cecil Brown, through five games 565 of the 1,050 minutes played by UCSB players have been played by newcomers, 53.8%.

Two-Point Excellence
In its last two games, UCSB has made 57-of-114 shots overall, 50.0%. In those two games, the Gauchos made 8-of-35 shots from three-point range, 22.9%, but an outstanding 49-of-79 from two-point range, 62.0%. On the season, Santa Barbara has now made 143-of-285 from the field overall, exactly 50.2%. From three-point range, the Gauchos are shooting a rather pedestrian 33.0%, but from two-point range, they have made 111-of-188 attempts, 59.1%.

A Bit More On Field Goal Percentage
UCSB opened the season on Nov. 10 with a 39.4% shooting performance against San Jose State. In each of the four games since the opener against the Spartans, the Gauchos have made 49.2% or better from the field. On Nov. 13, Santa Barbara hit 57.9% at Montana State, a season-best. In three of the last four games, UCSB has been over the 50.0% plateau and while the Gauchos are shooting 50.2% for the season, they have made 117-of-219 shots in the last four games, 53.4%. Last season, they made 44.1% from the field overall and 42.9% in Big West games. Finally, on the other end of the court, no UCSB opponent has yet made 50.0% in a game. San Diego State drained 49.1%, the highest by an opponent this season, but through five games, the Gauchos limited the opposition to 39.7% overall and 30.5% from three-point territory. SDSU entered Saturday's game with a team field goal percentage of 53.5%, so 49.1% wasn't a bad defensive effort.

25-Point Duo A Gaucho Rarity
In UCSB's Nov. 21 double-overtime victory over Pepperdine, two Gaucho players eclipsed the 25-point mark. Junior forward Chris Devine poured in a career-high 28 points, while junior guard Alex Harris had a career-best 27. It was the first time in more than 18 years that two Gauchos had scored 25 or more points in the same game. Several duos came close during those 18 years, but none hit the mark. Prior to Nov. 21, the last time was at Long Beach State on Feb. 25, 1988, when sophomore forward Mike Doyle scored 31 points and senior guard Brian Shaw scored 26.

Block Party
UCSB blocked 12 shots in its Nov. 21 win at Pepperdine. Not only were the 12 blocks a season-high, it was the highest total since the Gauchos also blocked 12 in a win over Pepperdine during the 1991-92 season. The last time Santa Barbara had more than 12 blocked shots was in December of 1987 when it swatted 13 in a win over Penn. The game at Pepperdine also marked the first time on record that three different players had at least three blocked shots in the same game for the Gauchos. Chris Devine, Tom Garlepp and Ivan Elliott each had a trio of blocks against the Waves. In its other four games combined, UCSB has just nine total blocked shots.

Freebies
Through its first two games in 2006-07, the Gauchos were a near-perfect 29-of-31 from the free throw line, 93.5%. Although they have a dropped-off in the last three games, they have still been solid, making at least 73.9% in every game. Interestingly, the only player who has yet to really hit his stride from the chartity stripe is one of the players who had the most success in 2005-06. Junior Chris Devine has made just 14-of-21, 66.7%, after making 77.7% last season.

Seniors Have Had Little Pull
If this were an election things may be different, but this is a basketball season and to this point seniors have had minimal impact on UCSB's fortunes. In fact, through five games, a senior has yet to step on the court for the Gauchos. That is expected to change this week when Cecil Brown returns, but UCSB has yet to play a senior in a game this season. The recently concluded run of road games at Montana State, UNLV and Pepperdine marked the first time since Bob Williams became head coach in 1998 that a Gaucho team had gone on the road without a senior in the traveling party.

Valid Points
UCSB is an improved offensive team. Through five games the Gauchos are averaging 80.6 points per game and theyhave scored 70 or more in all five games. Last season, Santa Barbara averaged 66.6 points per game and it scored 70 or more points five times in its first 18 games. Twice this season UCSB has scored 88 or more points in game. In 2005-06, the most points scored by the Gauchos was 82, a figure they reached twice. Finally, the 89 points scored on Nov. 21 at Pepperdine were the most points UCSB has scored since it went for 89 in a win over Long Beach State on Mar. 6, 2004.

Working Overtime
UCSB defeated Pepperdine in double-overtime on Nov. 21 in Malibu. It marked the fourth consecutive overtime victory for the Gauchos, a streak that dates back to the 2003-04 season.

Meaningless Fact Of The Week
With a pair of wins in California and one apiece in Nevada and Montana, UCSB has won games in three different states this year. A win at Portland on Saturday and the Gauchos will have achieved victories in four different states in the same season for the first time since the 1989-90 season when they won games in California (several), Iowa (Bradley in the Amana-Hawkeye Classic), Utah (Utah State) and Tennessee (Houston in the first round of the NCAA Tournament).

The Harris Poll
Junior guard Alex Harris was named Big West Player of the Week after leading the Gauchos with 25 points in a season-opening win over San Jose State and he hasn't let-up in the four games since. In Saturday's loss to San Diego State, Harris had his first sub-.500 shooting performance, but still finished with 21 points, his fifth straight 20-point performance. He leads the Gauchos and the Big West at 22.8 points per game. On Nov. 21, in a double-overtime win at Pepperdine, Harris scored a career-high 27 points and he played 48 of a possible 50 minutes. In fact, he has been a workhorse this season, averaging 37.0 minutes per game. In the last two games, Harris has played 87 of a possible 90 minutes. He is the first UCSB player to score 20 or more in five straight since Raymond Tutt ended the 1997-98 season with five-straight of 20 or more. The first five games this season also represent the five top scoring performances of Harris' career. In recent games, he has also started to diversify. In the narrow defeat to San Diego State, he had a career-high six assists, giving him 11 in the last two games. In the win over Pepperdine, he had a season-high seven rebounds. In the last two games he has averaged 5.5 assists and 5.5 rebounds per game. In fact, through five games this season, Harris has set new career-highs in points (27), assists (six), steals (five at Montana State), three-point baskets (five vs. San Jose State), field goals (eight on three occasions), field goal attempts (19 vs. San Diego State), free throws (nine vs. San Diego State) and free throw attempts (12 vs. San Diego State). Also, while he is shooting 52.1% overall, Harris has made 44.8% from three-point range and an impressive 24-of-42 from two-point territory, 57.1%. Finally, Harris made his final 14 free throws in 2005-06 and he made 19 straight to start this season, including his first five at Pepperdine, giving him 33 straight over two seasons, a new school record. The previous record of 32 in a row was set by Frank Horwath during the 1982-83 season.

The Devine File
Junior forward Chris Devine was solid in UCSB's first two games. In the Gauchos' last three games, he has beennn outstanding. Devine tied his career-high by scoring 25 points on Nov. 17 at UNLV and then on Nov. 21 at Pepperdine, he set a new career-high with 28. On Saturday, against San Diego State, he weas handcuffed with foul trouble, but still scored 14, on 5-of-7 shooting, and led the Gauchos with seven rebounds. While he is now averaging 18.6 points per game, Devine is averaging 22.3 per game in the last three. He also had a season-high 13 rebounds last week at Pepperdine. It was the fifth double-double of his career. Since Devine made 7-of-16 shots from the field in the season's first game, he has made 32-of-46 field goal attempts, 69.6%, and 31-of-42 from inside the three-point arc, 73.8%. Overall, he is now making 62.9% of his shots. In addition to achieving his career-high for points in a game this season, the Eagle River, Alaska, native had a career-high five steals on Nov. 10 against San Jose State. He also leads the Gauchos in rebounding at 7.8 per game. A Second Team All-Big West choice last season, Devine was selected to the league's preseason all-conference team this year and through four games he is showing why.

Aussie, Aussie, Aussie! Oye, Oye, Oye!
Sophomore forward Tom Garlepp has started the first five regular season games and after never playing more than 22 minutes in any game last season, he has not played fewer than 22 in any game this season. In fact, Garlepp has played 131 minutes in five games, an average of 26.2 per game. Last year, he layed 241 in 26 games, 9.3 per game, and after playing 38 in the first two games of the 2005-06 season, he played just 203 in his final 24 appearances, 8.5 per game. Garlepp is averaging 5.4 points, 4.2 rebounds and a team-leading 1.2 blocked shots per game. He has set career-highs this season in rebounds (eight vs. San Jose State), assists (five at Montana State), blocked shots (three at Pepperdine) and steals (two vs. San Jose State). While he has not scored a career-high for points in a game this season, he has scored nine at Montana State and eight against San Jose State, his third and fourth best efforts. Incidentally, all six of Garlepp's blocked shots have come in the last three games.

Old Buddy, Old Powell
Since scoring nine points in his first game as a Gaucho, freshman guard James Powell has scored in double-figures in four straight. On Saturday against San Diego State, despite foul trouble that limited him to 27 minutes, he scored 16 points on 6-of-12 from the field, including 2-of-6 from three-point range, he also had a pair of assists and steals. Through five games, Powell is averaging 14.4 points per game, third on the team, and shooting 48.0%, but in the last four games, he is averaging 15.7 points per game and he has made 21-of-41 shots from the field, 51.2%. Also, in the last four games, Powell has made 8-for-22 from three-point range, 36.4%. After scoring 17 points in the win at UNLV, he came back with a career-high 18-point performance at Pepperdine. Powell has also proven to be a key contributor in clutch situations. At UNLV, in a close game, he made his last five free throw attempts in the final seconds and at Pepperdine he scored nine of the team's 17 points in the second overtime. Also, Powell has made his last 12 free throws. Finally, he has made nine three-point baskets and he needs just six more to move into UCSB's freshman top-10.

Justin Time
Freshman guard Justin Joyner joined the starting lineup for the first time on Nov. 13 at Montana State and it doesn't look like he wants to leave anytime soon. He struggled with his shooting for the first few games, but his defense and playmaking ability made up for it. In the first four games, Joyner made 5-of-19 shots from the field, 26.3%, and he was 0-for-12 from three-point range. On Saturday against San Diego State, he scored a high of 11 points on 4-of-6 from the field overall and 2-of-4 from beyond the three-point arc. He has had foul trouble in the last two games, fouling out of each, but he has still been piling-up the minutes. After averaging 27.5 minutes per game in the first two games, Joyner has averaged 35.0 per game in the last three. While he had his season-high of 11 points against San Diego State, he also had his high of five rebounds against he Aztecs. Joyner leads the Gauchos in assists with 18, and he had seven in the team's win at UNLV, the most by a UCSB freshman since Branduinn Fullove had seven against Boise State on Jan. 4, 2001.

Ivan The Pretty Good
Junior forward Ivan Elliott was scoreless in Saturday's game against San Diego State. In fact, he did not attempt a shot in his 18 minutes of action. In the previous game, a Nov. 21 double-overtime win at Pepperdine, Elliott played his best game as a Gaucho. In a career-high 33 minutes against the Waves, he scored eight points, his second-highest total of the season, but he also had personal-bests of 10 rebounds and three blocked shots. Elliott entered the game against the Waves with just eight total rebounds and two blocked shots. On Nov. 13 at Montana State, Elliott played 17 minutes, made 5-of-6 field goal attempts, 4-of-4 free throws, and scored a personal-best 14 points.

Bing Is The Thing
Junior guard Trevor Bing played his best game of the season in the defeat to San Diego State. Because of James Powell's foul trouble, Bing was forced to play 16 minutes against the Aztecs and he responded by tying his career-high with six points. For the first time this season he attempted something other than a three-point shot and it paid off. Entering Saturday's game, Bing had taken seven shots on the season, all three-point attempts, but against SDSU, he took three shots, all two-pointers. The result? He was a perfect 3-for-3 from the floor. In addition, the Largon, Fla., native had season-bests with four assists, three rebounds and one steal. On the year, Bing has now made 7-of-10 shots from the field, 70.0%. Previously, he had scored a season-high six points in the season-opener on Nov. 10 against San Jose State, his only start of the campaign.

Around The Key - Notes
Saturday's game was the first in which UCSB used just eight players...For the first time this season, freshmen Emmanuel Bidias a Mouté and Paul Roemer did not play...Through four games, thee Gauchos have beaten teams from the Mountain West Conference, Western Athletic Conference, West Coast Conference and Big Sky Conference...In James Powell and Justin Joyner, UCSB has its first all-freshman starting backcourt since the 2000-01 season...Beau Gibb has eight fouls and just three field goal attempts in his 29 minutes of action...Win or lose on Wednesday night against Loyola Marymount, the Gauchos will conclude their most successful November under head coach Bob Williams...Their previous best November under Williams was in 2001-02 when they went 3-1...Following Saturday's game at Portland, UCSB will host Fresno State, the third former Big West school on the schedule.

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