UCSB Opens 3-Game Homestand on Sunday vs. Bakersfield

UCSB Opens 3-Game Homestand on Sunday vs. Bakersfield

Dec. 9, 2009

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• The Schedule
Sunday, December 13, 2009 at 2:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara vs. Cal State Bakersfield (2-4)
at UCSB's Thunderdome (6,000)
Series record vs. the Roadrunners - 1-1
Streak - Lost 1
Last time out vs. the Roadrunners - L, 69-67 (1/31/09)
There is a 2-for-1 ticket coupon online at PresidioSports.com. Just look on the bottom right of the home page!
Broadcast live on AM 990 and streaming live online by clicking here.
Game available via Gametracker
Streaming live online at BigWest.TV

Tuesday, December 15, 2009 at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara vs. UCLA (4-3)
at UCSB's Thunderdome (6,000)
Series record vs. the Bruins - 2-14
Streak - Lost 1
Last time out vs. the Bruins - L, 87-62 (11/12/06)
There is a 2-for-1 ticket coupon online at PresidioSports.com. Just look on the bottom right of the home page!
Broadcast live on AM 990 and streaming live online by clicking here.
Game available via Gametracker
Streaming live online at BigWest.TV

• Get Your Tickets!
Men's and women's basketball single season tickets are now on sale. You can purchase tickets by calling (805) 893-UCSB, visiting the Ticket Office located inside the Intercollegiate Athletics Building on campus or to buy online and print at home, click here. There is also a 2-for-1 coupon online at PresidioSports.com. Just look on the bottom right of the home page!

• New Saturday Hours
The Intercollegiate Athletics Ticket Office now has two parking spaces adjacent to the building and is now open on Saturdays, making it easier than ever for fans to purchase tickets. The ICA Ticket Office will be open from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm on Saturdays. The two parking spots, designated specifically for the ticket office, are already available during weekday hours, which are 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.

• Talk'n Gauchos
UCSB Athletics has a new weekly radio show called Talk'n Gauchos which airs every Tuesday from 6-7 p.m. on AM 1490 KIST. The show is broadcast live from State & A Bar and Grill, located on the corner of State Street and Anapamu Street in Santa Barbara. Fans are encouraged to attend the show for free gear and ticket giveaways or to even e-mail a question in to one of the guests and have it read live over the air. The show also airs live online via audio streaming and fans can click here to check out the entire lineup of live audio streaming online.

• Listen Up!
All men's and women's basketball games will be broadcast live on AM 1490 and AM 990 again this year, and those games will also be available online by clicking here.. And, UCSB Athletics is proud to announce that the baseball team will have over 20 games broadcast live on the air and through our website.

• Double Digit Defeats
Having lost its last two games by at least 16 points each, UCSB has not endured that tough of a stretch in a long time. Although the Gauchos' last two losses last season were by 19 and 35 points, respectively, the last time a UCSB team had successive losses by 16 or more points came when the Gauchos dropped an 86-55 decision to Michigan State on Nov. 18, 2005 and followed it up with a 76-56 loss to Louisville on Nov. 20, 2005.

• A Group of Roadies
UCSB has won its first two games of the season on the road - the first time that's happened since the 2006-07 season - whereas last season the Gauchos didn't win their first road game until Jan. 8 after dropping their first five away games.

• Baby, It's Cold Outside
UCSB had its third game this season in which it failed to make a three-point basket and the Gauchos are shooting just 20.5% from downtown this season. The last time a UCSB squad didn't hit a three-pointer in three games during a season was the 1993-94 campaign. The Gauchos have gone 0-for-17 (at Nevada), 0-for-10 (vs. Kentucky) and 0-for-8 (at Oregon State) from beyond the arc this season. In 1993-94, UCSB was 0-for-5 twice and 0-for-3 another time. Prior to this season, the last time UCSB went at least 0-for-10 from downtown came in a Nov. 26, 2005 loss at BYU when the Gauchos missed all 13 of their three-point attempts.

• Valentine's Block Party
Junior center Mekia Valentine has swatted 30 shots in her six games - an average of 5.0 per game, which ranks her third in the nation. She has already put her name in the school's single-game record books with two games of seven blocks and another with six. Valentine is more than halfway to Jenna Green's team-high 57 blocks from last season and is just 16 away from breaking into UCSB's single-season top-10. The school record for blocks in a season belongs to Lindsay Taylor, who swatted 69 shots in 2001-02.

Probable Starters

No. Name Pos Quick Notes
10 Emilie Johnson G 14 steals leads the team
21 Meagan Williams G Season-best 17 points @ Oregon St.
32 Margaret Johnson F Team went 20-5 in her starts last year
14 Jordan Franey F Averaging 8.4 ppg, 3.6 rpg
44 Mekia Valentine C Leads team with 16.0 ppg and 8.0 rpg
Possible Reserves

0 Bree Richardson G Played 13 solid mins at Oregon State
1 Sweets Underwood F Averaging 14 min per game
3 Megan Kritscher F/C Saw just 5 mins of action on 2-game trip
11 Stefanie Corgel G Has played just 2 games this year
12 Ariana Gnekow G Key bench contributor w/ 3.7 ppg & 3.9 rpg
22 Chris Spencer G Missed last 3 games with leg injury
25 Jessie Goble F/C Has played just 2 games this year
33 Destini Mason G One of 5 freshman on team

• Swat Team
Behind Valentine's record pace, UCSB is eighth in the country averaging 6.3 blocks per game. Against Kentucky, the Gauchos blocked 12 shots, which ties the school record for a single game. If the Gauchos' keep their current pace they would shatter the single-season record of 140 set in 2003-04 as they are on pace for 183 blocks. While Valentine has 30 of the team's 44 blocks, Meagan Williams is second with eight swats.

• Slow Start
At 2-5, the Gauchos are off to their slowest start since opening the 2006-07 season with a 2-5 mark. Opening the season with four straight losses marked the first time a UCSB team started that way since the 2005-06 season (losing five straight), which was 1-6 before going on a five-game winning streak, beginning with a win vs. UCLA.

• Windex Unnecessary for This Streak
Emilie Johnson, who missed just two free throws all of last season, has made her past 16 free throw shots. Last season Lauren Pedersen set a school record by making 29 consecutive free throws from Jan. 22-Feb. 14. Johnson ended last season by making her final 13 free throws.

• Without Borders
Following her 17-point performance at Oregon State, Meagan Williams might consider playing more of her games out of state. In the Gauchos' four games in California, Williams is averaging 8.3 points and 3.8 rebounds per game, which are not bad numbers. However, the Sacramento native is averaging 10.3 points and 5.0 rebounds per game in her three contests outside of the state's borders. Williams' career-high in points, 28 at Montana, also came out of California.

• TO is Not Terrell Owens in This Case
UCSB has committed 145 turnovers through seven games this season for a 20.7 per-game average, which is second-highest in the Big West. The Gauchos are forcing just 15.4 turnovers per game - a conference-low -5.29 turnover margin. UCSB is also averaging just 5.86 steals per game, which is fewest in the Big West.

• On the Rebound
In five of UCSB's seven games, the Gauchos have outrebounded the opposition and the team is averaging 37.6 rebounds per game (compared to 34.9 for their opponents). The Gauchos have seven different players who are averaging more than 3.0 rebounds per game and the team leads the Big West with its +2.7 margin. Every other conference team has a negative rebounding margin.

• Dynamic Duo
Mekia Valentine and Emilie Johnson are averaging 17.3 and 14.6 points per game, ranking them third and fifth, respectively, in the Big West. The pair have taken 159 of UCSB's 367 total shots, or 43.3% of the Gauchos' entire output. Valentine and Johnson are also the team's leading rebounders at 8.0 and 4.4 per game (Chris Spencer has a 6.5 rebound average, but in just two games).

• Making a Point
Last season UCSB allowed just 55.5 points per game - second-best in school single-season history - while opponents shot just 34.6% vs. the Gauchos. This season, though, it's been a bit different. UCSB is allowing 65.1 points per game while opponents are shooting 40.9%.

• No Advantage at Home
UCSB has dropped its first three games at the Thunderdome this season, already surpassing the number of losses from last year when the Gauchos went 13-2 at home. The last UCSB team to drop more than three home games was the 2006-07 squad, which lost nine games at home.

• `Dome Sweet `Dome
Despite the Gauchos' home record this season, the UCSB women's basketball program has enjoyed a large majority of its success inside the `Dome. The Gauchos have won over 400 games in the Thunderdome's existence, but over the past two decades, it has really proved to be a home court advantage. Since 1991, UCSB is 200-41 in the Thunderdome, an astounding winning percentage of .830.

• Halfway There
Last season UCSB hit the 70-point mark on just four occasions. So far this year the Gauchos have done it twice.

• Stay in Touch With the Gauchos
Three people will keep fans abreast of all things related to the women's basketball team this year through UCSBgauchos.com. Head Coach Lindsay Gottlieb has her own Twitter page at twitter.com/UCSBCoachG and Emilie Johnson and Margaret Johnson both write for the blog "Johnsons' Journal." Each social networking tool can be found on the women's basketball page at UCSBgauchos.com.

• The Lindsay Gottlieb File
Lindsay Gottlieb is in her second season as the Gauchos' head coach, and she is just the fourth head coach in UCSB women's basketball history. Last season Gottlieb guided the Gauchos to a 22-10 overall mark (15-1 in the Big West) and the Big West regular-season and tournament championships. Named the Big West Coach of the Year, Gottlieb became the first coach in Gaucho history to win at least 20 games and the Coach of the Year award in her first season - and one of only seven coaches nationwide to do so. Gottlieb led the Gauchos to their 14th consecutive postseason appearance and the team won 20 games for the 12th time in the past 14 years. In her first season at the helm of the program, Gottlieb guided the Gauchos to national prominence, ranking in the top-10 in field goal percentage defense, a top-20 finish in points allowed per game while watching her team set a school record for free throw percentage. No stranger to success, Gottlieb was formerly the associate head coach at Cal, helping the team to a 68-28 (.708) overall mark in her time there. Prior to that, Gottlieb was an assistant at the University of Richmond, where she helped the Spiders to three straight 20-win seasons.