Jan. 18, 2003
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -
UC Santa Barbara really defended its home court on Saturday night.
Pacific's top four scorers came into the game averaging a combined 49.4 points per game, but on Saturday night, Demetrius Jackson, Christian Maraker, Matt Kemper and Miah Davis combined for just 20 points and UCSB beat the Tigers 67-52 at the Thunderdome.
Branduinn Fullove led the Gauchos with 17 points and a season-high eight rebounds, and Nick Jones added 14 points and five rebounds to pace the offense. Casey Cook also chipped in with ten points for the Gauchos.
In addition to the UCSB's stifling defense, it outrebounded Pacific by a 37-21 margin, allowing the Tigers just three offensive rebounds.
Fullove got the Gauchos started by scoring the game's first two points from the free throw line. After the Tigers tied the score on a layup by Tom Cockle, who finished with a team-high 15, the Gauchos went on a 13-0 run to take a 15-2 lead and they never looked back. In fact, at halftime, UCSB led 34-18 and had limited Pacific to 31.8% shooting from the field.
Cockle made a three-pointer to open the second half, pulling the Tigers to within 13 at 34-21, but Santa Barbara responded again with a 7-0 run to make it 41-21 with 16:08 remaining in the game. Pacific never got closer than 14, at 59-45 with 4:33 to go, but when they did, Jones responded with a three-pointer to squelch the rally.
"I thought the defense we played on their top scorers was phenomenal, especially in the first half," said Gaucho coach Bob Williams. "Jacoby (Atako) did a great job on Demetrius (Jackson) early and that really set the tone."
Jackson entered the game as Pacific's leading scorer at 15.4 points per game. He finished with eight, but turned the ball over nine times. In fact, the Gauchos forced 14 Pacific turnovers and the Tigers assisted on just four baskets.
UCSB shot just 41.9% for the game, but they did made 9-of-23 shots from beyond the three-point arc. Additionally, the Gauchos, who attempted a season-high 35 free throws in Thursday's win over Cal State Northridge, attempted 29 more against Pacific.
Mark Hull attempted just six shots, scoring eight points. He did hit a pair of three-pointers, giving him 191 in his career and moving him into second on UCSB's all-time list. He needs just six more to set a new school record. Freshman guard Cecil Brown hit a pair of threes and scored eight points, all in the pivotal first half, and he pulled-down a career-high six rebounds. UCSB's other freshman guard, Josh Davis, struggled with his shooting at 0-for-3, but he did hit six free throws and he tied his career-high with three steals. Jacoby Atako had a game-high five assists.
With their second straight win, the Gauchos improve to 7-9 overall and 4-2 in Big West play. Pacific drops to 8-6 overall and 3-2 in league.
UCSB is now off until Saturday, January 25, when it hosts Central Coast-rival Cal Poly in a 7:00 p.m. game at the Thunderdome.