BERKELEY, Calif. - Propelled by stifling defense and red-hot shooting from three-point range, Cal throttled visiting UC Santa Barbara on Monday night, 70-50.
The Golden Bears made their first six three-point attempts, jumped out to a 29-13 lead and never looked back. Allen Crabbe, who finished with 19 points and five threes, hit a trio of the early three-pointers. Cal finished game 11-for-20 from three-pointer territory, 55.0%. At one point, the Bears were 11-of-16 from outside the arc, 68.7%.
The first half lead ballooned to 18 with 2:35 to play and by halftime Cal still led 37-23. For the Gauchos, the 23 points were the lowest single half total of the season and 50 points were easily the fewest they have scored in a game all season.
The Gauchos opened the second half strong and when James Nunnally came up with a steal and a coast-to-coast layup at the 18:10 mark, the advantage was down to 39-29. The teams traded baskets and it was still a 10-point game, 43-33, when Jaimé Serna drove baseline and made a reverse layup.
That was when the Bears slugged UCSB with a decisive blow.
Cal used a devastating 16-0 run to seize a commanding 59-33 lead with 10:20 left. Crabbe made a pair of three-pointers and a tip-in while Brandon Smith made a long three-pointer and a hanging jumper during the run.
Cobbs, who finished with a game-high and career-high25 points, punctuated his night by making a 35-foot three-pointer as the buzzer sounded to signal a shot clock violation with just under five minutes to play in the game. He made 10-of-12 from the field.
"There really is nothing good to take from this game," said Gaucho head coach Bob Williams. "I have to give them credit, they did a lot of things well, but we did a lot of things bad. We have a very long way to go."
Nunnally was the only UCSB player to score in double-figures as he finished with 10 points. He also tied Alan Williams for team-high honors in rebounding with six. Orlando Johnson struggled through one of the worst nights of his career as he made just 4-of-13 shots to finish with nine points. He missed all three of his three-point tries. As a team, the Gauchos hit just 2-of-13 three-point attempts, 15.4%.
The Gauchos' lengthy 12-day, four-game road trip ends on Thursday, Dec. 22 when they travel to Provo, Utah, to play at BYU in a 6:00 p.m. (PST) game against BYU.
Following the game in Provo, UCSB will be off until it opens Big West Conference play on Monday, Jan. 2, 2012 with a 7:00 p.m. game at Cal Poly. The Gauchos finally return home on Thursday, Jan. 5 when they host Cal State Fullerton in a 7:00 p.m. game at the Thunderdome. Tickets for all UCSB games are available from the Ticket Office in the Intercollegiate Atheltics Office on campus, by calling 805-893-UCSB(8272) or online by clicking here.