Dec. 17, 2003
LOS ANGELES -
Casey Cook scored a game-high 15 points, including two free throws with 18 second remaining, to give visiting UC Santa Barbara a 61-60 win over UCLA on Wednesday night.
Cook's free throws came 22 seconds after Bruin freshman forward Trevor Ariza had stolen a Gaucho pass near midcourt and went in for a slam dunk to give his team a 60-59 lead with 40 seconds to go. The Gauchos called timeout and then ran a play for Cook who sliced down the left side of the lane and was hammered on the shot by UCLA's T.J. Cummings, setting the stage for the free throw dramatics.
In addition to the two free throws that gave UCSB the win, Cook had a key put-back after a wild melee under the hoop that gave the Gauchos a 59-56 lead with 3:29 to go in the game. UCLA's Cedric Bozeman cut the lead to 59-58 with 2:13 remaining in the game when he used a pick by Cummings and scored on a right side lay-up. That was all the scoring until Ariza's slam dunk.
After jumping out to a quick 5-0 lead early in the game, Santa Barbara was outscored 21-8 to fall behind 21-13 with 10:21 to go in the first half. The Bruin lead would never get larger than eight and by halftime, the Gauchos had narrowed the gap to four, 35-31, on an eight-foot leaner by Branduinn Fullove.
UCLA scored the first basket of the second half on a slam dunk by center Michael Fey, but Cook hit a short jumper and forward Cameron Goettsche drilled a three-pointer from the top of the key to pull the Gauchos within one, 37-36.
The teams traded baskets for the next four minutes, but when UCSB guard Joe See hit a 23-foot three-pointer with 13:57 to go, the game was tied at 41-41. Forward Bryan Whitehead and Goettsche followed-up See's three-pointer with one basket apiece, giving the Gauchos a 47-43 lead with 8:45 to go.
Santa Barbara led for most of the remainder of the game, falling behind when Ariza converted the steal into a dunk with 40 seconds left.
In addition to his game-high 15 points, Cook had a game-high six rebounds, four on the offensive end. Sophomore guard Josh Davis scored a season-high 13 points, making 5-of-6 shots overall and all three of his three-point attempts. He scored 11 of his points in the first half to keep the Gauchos close.
UCSB shot 52.2% for the game, while the Bruins made 52.3%. The Gauchos outrebounded UCLA, 25-20, and they pulled down 12 offensive rebounds, including ten in the second half.
See made 3-of-4 shots and had a team-high four assists in 25 minutes.
UCSB, which has now won four games in a row, was playing with a hobbled Branduinn Fullove, who scored four points on 2-of-7 shooting in his second appearance of the season, without a suspended Nick Jones, and for much of the game without leading scorer Cecil Brown, who sprained an ankle in the first half and was limited to 15 minutes.
"I thought that this team winning without Branduinn (Fullove) at full speed, with Cecil (Brown) going down with the ankle in the first half and without Nick Jones, was really outstanding," said UCSB head coach Bob Williams. "These guys showed me a lot. We came into Pauley Pavilion and beat one of the storied programs in college basketball history. This was very special."
The Gauchos are now 5-2 on the season. UCLA drops to 3-2.
UCSB travels to the Dodge Holiday Classic in Reno, Nevada on Saturday and Sunday. In the opener of the tournament, the Gauchos will play fifth-ranked Kansas at 5:00 p.m. On Sunday, UCSB takes on Alabama State, also at 5:00 p.m.