Gauchos Travel to Pacific ESPNU-Featured Game Saturday

Gauchos Travel to Pacific ESPNU-Featured Game Saturday

Jan. 23, 2009

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• The Schedule
Game No. 19
Saturday, January 24, 2009 at 7:00 p.m. (PST)
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos at Pacific Tigers
at Pacific's A.G. Spanos Center
Radio: KIST 1490-AM in Santa Barbara
Game available on Gametracker

Game No. 20
Thursday, January 29, 2009 at 8:00 p.m. (PST)
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos at Cal State Northridge Matadors
at UCSB's Thunderdome
Radio: KIST 1490-AM in Santa Barbara
Game available on Gametracker

• UCSB Remains On The Road For One More
UC Santa Barbara will travel to Pacific on Saturday, Jan. 24 for a 7:00 p.m. ESPNU game. Santa Barbara returns home on Thursday, Jan. 29 when it hosts Cal State Northridge in another ESPNU game scheduled to tip-off at 8:00 p.m. Tickets for all Gaucho games can be purchased from the Ticket Office in the Intercollegiate Athletics Building on campus, by calling 805-893-UCSB, or online by clicking here.

• The Gaucho Record
UCSB will enter Saturday's game with an 8-10 record overall and a 2-4 record in Big West games. On Thursday night the Gauchos ran into a red-hot UC Davis team and dropped an 89-75 decision. In its previous game, UCSB defeated Cal Poly on the road, 72-62. The win over the Mustangs ended a four-game road losing streak and it was the team's first Big West road victory this season.

• Next Two Games Slated For ESPNU: Here's Where To Find It
Each of the next two UCSB games will be televised on ESPNU. The game at Pacific on Saturday, Jan. 24 and the Jan. 29 home game against Cal State Northridge will both be carried live on ESPNU with Steve Physioc and former Arizona star Miles Simon calling the action. The Gauchos' game against Northridge has been moved to 8:00 p.m. to accommodate the telecast. ESPNU is available on channel 264 on Cox Digital Cable in Santa Barbara, on Direct TV channel 614, and Dish Network channel 148. Check with your local cable provider for your channel number.

• Gauchos Drop 89-75 Decision To Sizzling UC Davis
Chris Devine scored a season-high 27 points and Greg Somogyi added a career-high 14, but UC Santa Barbara couldn't stop a sizzling UC Davis team, losing 89-75 on the road Thursday. The Aggies shot 56.7% overall for the contest, including a 52.4% from three-point range. They broke open a close game, outscoring the Gauchos 28-15 in the final 11:03. Guard Vince Oliver led the Davis attack with 21 points, and five of his teammates were in double-figures. Overall, the Aggies made 11-of-21 shots from three-point range with five different players connecting and three making a trio of shots apiece. UCSB scored a season-high 56 points in the paint. Devine made 13-of-19 shots from the field while Somogyi hit 6-of-8. Jaimé Serna also added a career-high nine points in just 14 minutes. But while the Aggies were firing on all cylinders from the perimeter, the Gauchos struggled, making a season-low one three-point basket. Guard Jordan Weiner made their sole three-pointer midway through the second half. As a team UCSB was 1-for-9 from three-point range. Overall, UCSB shot a solid 50.0%, including 56.1% from inside the three-point line. Santa Barbara trailed almost the entire game, leading just once in the first half at 2-0 on a lay-up by Serna to open the game, and then at 54-53 on a lay-up by James Nunnally with 15:10 to play, otherwise it was an uphill battle. The Aggies also won the battle of the boards, 36-27. On a positive note, UCSB had just five turnovers in the game, by far its season-low, to go along with 13 assists. Guard D.J. Posley had a team-high four assists. Finally, the 75 points marked the second-highest scoring total of the season for the Gauchos.

• The Opponents
The Gauchos and Pacific have played 97 times in a series that dates back to 1947. The Tigers hold a 50-47 all-time edge over Santa Barbara. The teams split a pair of games last season with each winning on the road. Pacific won in Santa Barbara, 71-58, and UCSB won in Stockton by a score of 60-53. The Gauchos and Cal State Northridge have played 36 times over the years. UCSB holds a 27-9 edge over the Matadors. The teams split a pair of games in 2007-08 with each team winning on the road. Northridge won in Santa Barbara, 88-84, while the Gauchos won in the San Fernando Valley, 77-66.

• The Bob Williams File
Bob Williams is in his 11th season as head coach at UC Santa Barbara. In 2007-08, Williams guided the Gauchos to a 23-9 overall record. The 23 wins were a school record, and UCSB also won its second Big West regular season title with a 12-4 conference record. Following the campaign, the Gauchos were awarded a bid to the National Invitation Tournament. It was the third time that a Williams-coached UCSB team advanced to postseason play. The 2002 Gauchos won the school's first Big West Tournament title, advancing to the NCAA Tournament, and in 2003, they won the league's regular season championship and played in the NIT. Williams has been selected Big West Coach of the Year twice, in 1998-99 and 2002-03. In 1998-99, he took over a UCSB program that had not recorded a winning season in five years, and after seeing his team lose its first eight games that year - extending a two-season losing streak to 16 straight games - the Gauchos turned things around, winning 15 of their final 20 games and finishing on top in the Big West's Western Division. Williams has a UCSB record of 171-141. He guided the program to eight winning seasons in his first 10 years, and a pair of 20 win seasons. He has a career record of 102-68 in Big West games. Prior to his arrival at UCSB, Williams spent eight years at UC Davis and in those eight years, his teams recorded 20 or more wins five times and a 158-76 record. In Williams's final season, the Aggies went 31-2, won the NCAA Division II National Championship and he was named NABC Division II Coach of the Year. Including two seasons at Menlo College, Williams has an overall career record of 360-241 (.598) at four-year schools.

• Possible Starters - Notes
G - 20 - Will Brew, Jr. - Has just four turnovers in last three games, 75 minutes.
G - 42 - James Powell - Failed to make a three-pointer at UC Davis, only second time this year.
G - 21 - James Nunnally - Nine field goal attempts at UC Davis were one short of career-high.
F - 0 - Jaimé Serna -Scored career-high nine points in just 14 minutes at UC Davis.
F - 10 - Chris Devine - Had season-high 27 at UC Davis and now has 1,396 in his career.

• Possible Reserves - Notes
G - 1 - D.J. Posley - Has four assists in three of the last four games.
G - 2 - Nick Quick - Has played in 9 out of the 18 games.
G - 3 - Jordan Weiner - Scored career-high 14 points at Cal Poly.
G - 4 - Paul Roemer - Missed last two games with shoulder sprain. Still questionable.
F - 15 - Sam Phippen - After scoring 7 points last year, he has 43 in 18 games this year.
F - 44 - Jesse Byrd - Could return in mid-February after knee surgery on Dec. 31.
C - 55 - Greg Somogyi - Scored career-high 14 points, on 6-of-8 shooting, at UC Davis.

• Roemer Joins Byrd, Joyner On Injured List
UCSB junior guard Paul Roemer injured his right shoulder in practice last week. He missed Saturday's game at Cal Poly and Thursday's game at UC Davis and is doubtful for Saturday night's game at Pacific. Prior to the game at Cal Poly, Roemer had played in all 16 games, starting seven, and had made 48 straight appearances dating to the 2007-08 season. He is averaging 3.7 points, 2.1 assists, and 1.5 rebounds per game. Junior forward Jesse Byrd, a starter in the first 11 games of the year, injured his left knee in a Dec. 20 game at San Diego State. He is expected to be sidelined until at least mid-February, but he has started running lightly. Byrd, who led the Gauchos and was second in the Big West in rebounding at 7.6 per game, joined point guard Justin Joyner on the injured list for the Gauchos. Joyner, the team's starting point guard in each of his first two seasons, is redshirting the 2008-09 season as he recovers from wrist surgery.

• On The Road Again
Following Saturday's game at Pacific, UCSB will return home...briefly. The Gauchos will play Cal State Northridge at home on Thursday, Jan. 29 before heading out on the road again to play at Cal State Fullerton (Feb. 5) and UC Irvine (Feb. 7). When those two games have been played, Santa Barbara will have played 14 out of 19 games away from home. UCSB has struggled on the road this season with a 2-7 record in true road games and a 4-7 mark in games away from home. The bright side? The Gauchos will finish the season by playing six of seven games at home.

• Something In Reserve
In its last two games, UCSB has gotten major contributions from its bench. A week ago, in a Jan. 17 win at Cal Poly, the Gauchos' bench combined for season-high 44 points. In that one, reserve guards D.J. Posley (17) and Jordan Weiner (14) each scored a career-high while combining for 31. On Thursday night at UC Davis, the five available bench players tallied 23 points, led by freshman center Greg Somogyi, who scored a career-high 14 points. In the last two games, UCSB reserves have scored a total of 67 points, 45.6% of the team's total of 147.

• The Inside Job
In Thursday's loss at UC Davis, the Gauchos scored a season-high 56 points inside the paint. UCSB received a season-high 27 points from senior forward Chris Devine and a career-high 14 points from freshman center Greg Somogyi. In addition, freshman Jaimé Serna added a career-high nine.

• The Case Of The Vanishing Three-Pointer
UCSB made a season-low one three-point basket on Thursday night at UC Davis. Jordan Weiner, who was 1-for-5, made the team's only three. On the season, the Gauchos have now made 94 three-pointers, an average of 4.9 per game. The game against the Aggies marked the eighth time this season that Santa Barbara made fewer than five three-pointers in a game. The team's leading three-point shooter, James Powell, failed to make one for just the second time this year.

• Making A Point
The Gauchos scored 75 points on Thursday night, their second-highest total of the season. On Jan. 17 at Cal Poly, UCSB tallied 72 points, ending a streak of four straight games below 70 points. Santa Barbara has now scored 70 or more points in back-to-back games for just the second time this season. Overall, the Gauchos have been over 70 six times in 18 games. They scored a season-high 81 points on Dec. 13 against Loyola Marymount.

• As The Ball Turns...Over
There were several bright spots in UCSB's loss at UC Davis on Thursday night. Perhaps the most positive was that the Gauchos committed just five turnovers in the game, easily their lowest total of the season. In the previous game at Cal Poly, Santa Barbara had just 11 turnovers. The 16 turnovers in the last two games is the lowest two-game total this season. With the exception of a Jan. 10 game in which they committed a season-high 24 turnovers against Cal State Fullerton, the Gauchos have protected the ball much better recently. While they are averaging 15.0 turnovers for the season, they have had just 89 in the last seven games, 12.7 per game. With the game against Cal State Fullerton tossed out, UCSB has just 65 in six games, 10.8 per game. Finally, while they have had 20 or more six times this season, they have done so just twice in the last 13 outings.

• A Fresh Approach
When UCSB played four freshmen in the season-opener against Cal State Los Angeles, it was the first time that four freshmen had played in the same game for the Gauchos since the 2000-01 season. The four freshmen, guards James Nunnally and Will Brew, Jr., forward Jaimé Serna, and center Greg Somogyi have each played in all 18 games. In the Big West Conference opener at Long Beach State, they started three of the freshmen - Nunnally, Brew and Somogyi - also a first since the 2000-01 season. In 2000-01, the Gauchos started Branduinn Fullove, Jacoby Atako, and Nick Jones together on several occasions. Brew, Nunnally, and Serna have been in the starting lineup in each of the last three games.

• Freshmen Block Party
The Gauchos have blocked 48 shots on the season, an average of 2.7 per game. Freshman Greg Somogyi leads the way with 27, 56.5% of the team total. Somogyi, however is not the only freshman getting into the shot-blocking act. Jaimé Serna ranks second on the team with six, while James Nunnally has three, and Will Brew, Jr., has two. Combined the first-year foursome has 38 of the team's 48 swats, an impressive 79.2%.

• A New Start
Last season, only seven UCSB players started games and the Gauchos had just three different starting lineups. In 2008-09, 11 different players have started games while UCSB has trotted out seven different starting fives.

• Devine Intervention
Chris Devine had his best offensive game of the season on Thursday night at UC Davis. Devine scored a season-high 27 points, one point shy of his career-high of 28 set at Pepperdine during the 2006-07 season. In the previous game, at Cal Poly, he had his streak of double-figure scoring games ended at eight consecutive when he scored eight points. Overall, he is playing his best offensive basketball since the 2006-07 season. Devine is averaging 14.9 points and 5.9 rebounds per game. In the last 10 games, he has scored 165 points, an average of 16.5 per game. The eight-game double-figure scoring streak was his longest since early in the 2006-07 season. He opened league play with back-to-back 20 point games for the only time this season. Devine tallied 20 on Jan. 2 at Long Beach State and he went for 24 on Jan. 4 at UC Riverside. He also had 24 points on Nov. 24 at San Francisco. The Eagle River, Alaska-native has averaged 7.1 rebounds per game in the seven games since the team's leading rebounder, Jesse Byrd, went down with a knee injury. He enters Saturday's game at Pacific with 1,396 career points and needs four to move into seventh all-time. In addition, Devine has moved into the school's all-time top-10 for career rebounds. He now has 627, the eighth most all-time. He needs 20 to move into seventh. He is one of five players to appear on both the scoring and rebounding top-10s. Finally, Devine also has a pair of double-doubles on the season - against Cal State Los Angeles (17 points and 11 rebounds) and Winston-Salem State (12 points and 10 rebounds) - giving him 11 in his career.

• Old Buddy, Old Powell
Junior guard James Powell scored six points, had two rebounds, and had one assist on Thursday night at UC Davis. In his last two games, Powell has totaled just 15 points - 7.5 per game - and has made 5-for-15 shots overall. Prior to the last two games, the senior from Pomona, Calif., had scored 10 or more points in five straight games. In fact, in each of the two games prior to the last two, he had 19 points, his second-highest total of the year. Powell is still second on the team in scoring at 11.6 points per game. He has scored in double-figures 10 times this season and had a season-high 22 on Nov. 24 at San Francisco. While he has made 19-of-44 shots in the last four games, a decent 43.2%, he has generally struggled with his shooting this season, making 34.5% overall and 28.6% from three-point range. In 10 games prior to the last four, Powell made just 31-of-101 field goal attempts overall, 30.7%, and 18-of-60 from three-point range, 30.0%. On the year, he continues to lead the Gauchos in three-point baskets with 32, but he failed to make one at UC Davis. It was just the second time in 16 games this season that Powell did not make a three-pointer. He is averaging 2.8 rebounds, 1.6 assists, and 1.1 steals per game. He had a season-high five assists on Jan. 2 at Long Beach State and a career-high seven rebounds on Nov. 14 against Cal State Los Angeles. Powell has made 149 career three-pointers, the eighth most in UCSB history. He needs one to tie for seventh. Finally, Powell enters the Pacific game with 857 career points and needs 143 to become the 23rd Gaucho to hit the 1,000 point mark.

• Byrd's Season On Hold
Junior forward Jesse Byrd injured his knee in the Dec. 20 game at San Diego State and is expected to be sidelined until at least mid-February. When he was injured, Byrd was UCSB's leading rebounder at 7.6 per game and he ranked third in scoring at 8.3 per outing. Against San Diego State he had four points and six rebounds. It marked the 11th straight game in which he had at least five rebounds. On Dec. 17 at Weber State he had a double-double, going for 10 points and 14 rebounds. The 14 rebounds were the most by a Gaucho in five seasons. It was Byrd's second double-double of the season, he also had 13 points and 12 rebounds on Dec. 4 at Utah Valley. In the five games prior to his injury, the transfer from San Francisco averaged 10.4 points and 9.8 rebounds per game.

• Yes, Serna
Freshman forward Jaimé Serna has started the last three games, the first three starts of his career. On Thursday night at UC Davis, Serna scored a career-high nine points. He also set a career-high with eight field goal attempts and he tied a high with four field goals made. The Laguna Beach, Calif., native accomplished everything in just 14 minutes. Serna had two quick fouls in the first half and saw his time limited because of them. On Jan. 10 against Cal State Fullerton, he made his first start and tied his career-high with seven rebounds while playing a career-high 32 minutes. Serna is averaging 5.2 points and 3.4 rebounds per game. His rebounding average ranks him third on the team, second among active players. He has had a career-high seven boards three times and five or more six times. Also, while he is averaging 18.3 minutes per game, Serna has played 21 or more in four of the last six.

• The Hungary Hunter
Freshman center Greg Somogyi had two of his best offensive games of the season in the last two games. On Thursday at UC Davis, Somogyi made 6-of-8 shots and scored a career-high 14 points. On Jan. 17 at Cal Poly he made 4-of-7 shots and scored eight points. Somogyi is now averaging a season-high 4.6 points per game overall, including 11.0 in the last two games. In addition to the career-high 14 points, the native of Budapest set new standards in field goals made and attempted. In the last two games, Somogyi is 10-of-15 from the field, 66.7%, and is now shooting 61.5% overall. He also had four rebounds and two blocked shots in his 22 minutes against the Aggies. He continues to lead the Gauchos in blocked shots with 27, the second most by a UCSB freshman ever. He had a career-high five on Dec. 20 at San Diego State, and he has blocked at least one shot in eight straight and 15 of 18.

• Strike A Posley
One game after scoring a career-high 17, senior guard D.J. Posley had six points, four rebounds, and four assists against UC Davis. He made 2-of-4 shots against the Aggies and both of his free throws. On Jan. 17 at Cal Poly, he was 6-for-9 from the floor and bettered his career scoring high by seven points. He also had a career-high seven rebounds against the Mustangs. On the year, Posley is fourth on the team at 6.6 points per game. He also leads the team with 46 assists, 2.7 per game, and steals with 24. On Thursday, Posley had a streak of 11 straight games with at least one steal ended. He did, however, have four assists for the third time in the last four games. He has had four or more six times this season and a season-high five on three occasions. Finally, while Posley is shooting 39.8% on the year, he has gone 12-of-20 in the last three games, 60.0%.

• The Flying Nunnally
Freshman James Nunnally has been in the starting lineup in six of the last seven games, including the last four. On Thursday night at UC Davis, Nunnally had six points, three rebounds, two assists, and one steal in 23 minutes. In the last three games, he is averaging 6.0 points, 4.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists, and 1.0 steals per game. Nunnally is now averaging 6.2 points and 3.2 rebounds per game overall. On Thursday night, he made 3-of-9 shots from the field and is now shooting 41.9%. In the last four games, however, the graduate of Stockton's Weston Ranch High School has made 5-of-20 shots, 25.0%. Nunnally has had three or more rebounds in four straight games and 11 times this season. He had five assists and just one turnover in the last two games. Also, while he has attempted 43 free throws this season, 27 have come in the last seven games. In his first start, against Ball State on Dec. 29, Nunnally had 12 points, six rebounds, and three assists. The 12 points were his second-highest total of the season. He had career-highs of 22 points and seven rebounds on Nov. 21 against North Carolina.

• Something's Brewing
In three games since scoring a career-high 18 points against UC Irvine, freshman guard Will Brew, Jr., has scored a total of just six points. He had four points, on 2-of-5 shooting, to go with two rebounds, one assist, and one steal on Thursday at UC Davis. Brew has started 10 of the last 11 games. In the two games prior to Thursday, he had three assists in each. In fact, in the last three games, Brew has seven assists and just four turnovers in 75 minutes. On the year, he is averaging 4.1 points, 1.8 assists, 2.2 rebounds, and 1.0 steals per game. He has scored in double-figures twice, going for 11 on Dec. 4 at Utah Valley in addition to his outburst against UCI. Brew has 73 points on the year, 29 coming in those two games. In the game against UCI, he made 6-of-7 three-point attempts, including six in a row to start the game. He now has 12 three-pointers on the year, tied for third on the team. On Jan. 8 against UCI, he not only had 18 points, but he tied his high with five rebounds.

• Roemer Wasn't Built In A Day
Junior guard Paul Roemer has missed the last two games with a shoulder injury. He remains questionable for the game at Pacific. After starting the first seven games of the season, Roemer has come off the bench in each of his last eight. On Jan. 10 against Cal State Fullerton, Roemer played 19 minutes and had one of his best games in a few weeks, going for five points, four rebounds, two assists, and one steal. He also made his 12th three-pointer of the season and is now tied for third on the team. The four rebounds he had against Fullerton equaled his total for seven previous games.

• Jordan Rules
Sophomore guard Jordan Weiner had three points, on 1-for-5 from three-point range, at UC Davis. He was coming off of a career-high 14-point performance in the Jan. 17 win at Cal Poly. Against the Mustangs, Weiner made a career-high four three-pointers. He scored 12 points in the first half against Cal Poly. He scored 11 points, his previous season-high, on Dec. 29 against Ball State. Weiner has now made 15 three-pointers and two two-pointers on the year. He is second on the team in three-pointers made.

• Sam He Is
Sophomore Sam Phippen was scoreless in 13 minutes at UC Davis. He was coming off of a five-point performance on Jan. 17 at Cal Poly. Phippen made his fourth three-pointer of the season against the Mustangs. He is now averaging 2.4 points and 1.5 rebounds per game and has scored 43 points in 18 games after tallying just seven points in 15 games last year.