November 30, 2003

Gauchos Heat-Up Offensively But Can't Stop Southeast Missouri State in 77-75 Loss at Montana Holiday Classic

Nov. 30, 2003

Box Score

MISSOULA, Mont. - Led by forward Dainmon Gonner, who scored 21 points, Southeast Missouri State had five players score in double-figures, and the Indians edged UC Santa Barbara 77-75 in the third-place game at the Montana Doubletree Holiday Classic in Missoula.

Gonner's effort helped Southeast Missouri overcome a career-high 23-point performance by UCSB senior guard Jacoby Atako. Atako, who scored 18 of his points in the second half and made four three-point baskets in the game, made 9-of-11 shots overall and helped the Gauchos rally from a ten-point first half deficit.

UCSB, in fact, took a six-point lead with 12:34 left in the game on a lay-up by junior forward Casey Cook, who equaled his career-high with 16 points. But the Indians went on a 16-4 run over the next seven minutes to take a 62-56 lead and although the Gauchos were able to pull to within three on several occasions, they weren't able to get any closer until Atako's three-pointer at the buzzer made it a two-point game.

Santa Barbara once again played without senior guard Branduinn Fullove and Nick Jones. Fullove has an injured left foot and Jones is suspended for eight games.

After shooting under 33.0% in a Saturday night loss to St. Mary's, the Gauchos heated-up on the offensive end on Sunday night. UCSB shot 45.6% for the game, including 50.0% (9-of-18) from three-point territory. On Saturday, the Gauchos made just 2-of-17 shots from beyond the arc.

In addition to the two players who scored in double-figures, sophomore guard Joe See chipped-in eight points, including a pair of three-pointers, and sophomore forward Cameron Goettsche had a season-high seven points and seven rebounds. He too made two three-point baskets. Also, after getting soundly outrebounded in the tournament opener, the Gauchos won the rebounding battle by a 36-26 margin.

With the loss, UCSB drops to 1-2 on the year. They will play their first home game on Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. when they host Pepperdine at the Thunderdome.