SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – Amadou Sow was a perfect 9-for-9 from the field and had a career-high 23 points, breaking UC Santa Barbara's single-season record for points by a freshman, and Ar'mond Davis added 13 points and a career-high 17 rebounds, leading the Gauchos to a 92-82 win at Cal Poly on Saturday night.
The win gives the Gauchos (21-9 overall, 10-6 Big West) the No. 2 seed in next week's Big West Tournament where they will play Cal State Northridge on Thursday at noon in Honda Center. Cal State Fullerton, which lost at home to Hawai'i on Saturday, has the same 10-6 league mark, but UCSB has the tiebreaker.
"Everyone is 0-0 now," said head coach Joe Pasternack. "That's what I told our guys in the locker room after the game. We just have to focus on the first game and not worry about the second or third games. In this league, any team can beat any other team."
Sow's 23 points tied set a career-high and gives him 361 on the season, breaking a record originally set by Chris Devine in 2005-06. His 9-for-9 shooting performance was also the best by a Gaucho since Mike Vukovich went 12-for-12 in a game at Pacific in 2001.
"My teammates were great at getting me the ball in the right spots tonight," Sow said. "I didn't really have a rhythm on Thursday (at CSUN) so I wanted to be better tonight."
Sow, who committed two first half fouls and a third early in the second half, did is damage in just 19 minutes of playing time.
Davis was dominant on the glass and the 17 rebounds were the most by a UCSB player since Alan Williams had 19 on Mar. 7, 2015 in a home win over Cal Poly.
"Ar'mond was fantastic on the boards tonight," Pasternack said. "I've challenged him and he has responded. His effort was great."
Cal Poly 12-7 lead on a three-pointer by Kuba Niziol with 16:52 left in the first half, but the Gauchos outscored the Mustangs 43-26 the rest of the way to take a 50-38 halftime lead and then never looked back, building the lead to 17 twice in the second half before settling in for the 10-point win. The Mustangs, playing their final game under head coach Joe Callero, tried to rally back, butting the lead to 88-80 with 1:57 remaining, but they could get no closer.
Cal Poly was led by senior Donovn Fields who finished with 23 points. Marcellus Garrick chipped in 18 and Kuba Niziol had 14. Mark Crowe led his team with 10 rebounds.
The win was the Gauchos fourth in their last five games and the 21 victories gives them 44 over the last two seasons, the most over a two-season span in school history.