March 7, 2008
Game No. 30
Saturday, March 8, 2008 at 4:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos at Long Beach State 49ers
at LBSU's Pyramid
Radio: KTMS 990/1490-AM
Game No. 31
Wednesday-Saturday, March 12-15, 2008 at TBA
2008 Big West Tournament
at the Anaheim Convention Center
Radio: KTMS 990/1490-AM
UCSB Enters Regular Season Finale In Search Of No. 1 Seed
With its win at Cal State Northridge on Thursday night, UC Santa Barbara has improved to 11-4 in league and pulled into a tie for first with the Matadors and Cal State Fullerton. If the Gauchos can defeat Long Beach State on Saturday afternoon, they would earn the No. 1 seed at next week's Big West Tournament. Even if Northridge defeats Cal Poly and Fullerton wins at UC Irvine on Saturday, UCSB possesss the tiebreaker with both and would prevail. If the Gauchos lose at Long Beach and the Matadors beat Cal Poly, they could still earn a bye into the league semifinals as the second-place finisher if Irvine defeats Fullerton. The lowest that Santa Barbara could drop is third-place, and that would occur if Northridge and Fullerton each win and the Gauchos lose.
On The Record
UCSB enters the regular season finale with an overall record of 22-7 and a Big West mark of 11-4. On Thursday night, the Gauchos won at Cal State Northridge, 77-66. On Mar. 1, they won their home finale with a 73-55 win over UC Riverside. Thursday's win was UCSB's fifth in a row in Big West play. In fact, since opening league play with 1-2 and 3-3 records, Santa Barbara has gone 10-2 and 8-1 with six of the wins coming on the road and both losses coming at home.
Gauchos Get To 20 For Ninth Time, Equal Highest Win Total Ever
The Feb. 20 win at Pacific gave UCSB its 20th victory of the 2007-08 season. Thursday's win at Cal State Northridge was the Gauchos' 22nd of the season, equaling the school record set in 1987-88 when they finished 22-8. This marks the ninth time in school history that the Gauchos have won 20 games in a season, the eighth in the modern era, and the first since the 2001-02 campaign. For head coach Bob Williams, it is the second time that he has led the program to 20 wins, the first being in 2001-02. Santa Barbara also hit the 20 victory plateau in 1991-92, 1989-90, 1988-89, 1987-88, 1970-71, 1960-61 and 1940-41. Williams has joined Jerry Pimm as the only coaches in school history to lead more than one team to 20 wins. UCSB is also 15 games over the .500 mark for the first time since the 1987-88 season.
UCSB Wins Sixth Straight Big West Road Game, 77-66 At Cal State Northridge
Alex Harris scored 25 points and Ivan Elliott added 16, and UC Santa Barbara held-off Cal State Northridge to record an important 77-66 road win on Thursday night. UCSB used a 14-2 rally midway through the first half to take a decisive 27-15 lead over Northridge with 8:52 remaining. The lead peaked at 16 when James Powell made a lay-up with 7:00 left. The Matadors pulled to within seven, 43-36, at the half, but the Gauchos scored the first seven points of the second half to extend the lead back to 14, 50-36 with 16:29 left in the game. The Matadors scored six in a row to pull to within eight, 50-42, but another 7-0 Gaucho run made it 57-42 with 11:40 left. The lead remained in double-digits until Josh Jenkins made a 15-foot jumper at the 5:23 mark, pulling his team to within eight, 65-57. Northridge kept chipping away, but could get no closer than 71-66 on a Deon Tresvant free throw with 1:31 on the clock. The Gauchos sealed the game at the free throw line and on the defensive end. Powell was intentionally fouled and made a pair of free throws with 1:22 to play. After UCSB forced a Matador turnover, Paul Roemer was fouled. He made one out of two to make it an eight-point game with 1:09 remaining. On the next Northridge possession, Roemer stripped Tresvant of the ball and was fouled. He missed both free throws, but Harris stole the ball from Tremaine Townsend with 49 seconds left. Harris was intentionally fouled and converted both free throws to give UCSB an insurmountable 76-66 lead. Harris added a team-high seven rebounds, three steals and a pair of assists. Powell and Devine joined Harris and Elliott in double-figures for the Gauchos with 12 and 10 respectively. Tresvant, who scored 31 when Northridge defeated UCSB in Santa Barbara on Jan. 5, had 25 on Thursday night. UCSB shot a decent 46.8%, and held the Matadors to just 40.0%. The Gauchos also won the rebounding battle, 34-31, and forced 18 turnovers while committing just 15.
Probable Starters - Notes
G - Justin Joyner - Has just 18 turnovers in last 11 games, a span of 293 minutes.
G - Alex Harris - Second Gaucho to score more than 1,600 points. Now has 1,638.
G - James Powell - Made 17-of-25 shots from three-point range in last four games.
F - Chris Devine - 22nd Gaucho to hit 1,000 career points. Has 1,104 in career, 19th all-time.
F - Ivan Elliott - Has scored 16 points in each of his last two games.
Probable Reserves - Notes
G - Nick Quick - Has attempted eight shots in just 16 minutes of action.
G - Jordan Weiner - 15 out of his 17 field goals are from three-point range.
G - Paul Roemer - Has six blocked shots in the last eight games. Tied high of two vs. UCR.
G - D.J. Posley - Had three points at CSUN, his first points since Jan. 26 vs. UC Davis.
F - Nedim Pajevic - Had seven points, five rebounds in outstanding effort at CSUN.
F - Sam Phippen - Scored two points at Utah State, his first points since Dec. 1 at LMU.
F - Beau Gibb - Has attempted just 16 shots in 27 games, 189 minutes this season.
F - Peter Jordan - Walk-on freshman has played in two games this season.
Harris Becomes Second Gaucho To Score 1,600 Points
Senior guard Alex Harris scored 18 points in UCSB's Mar. 1 win over UC Riverside, and in doing so he became the second UCSB player to score 1,600 career points. Harris, who is averaging 20.3 points per game this season, had 25 on Thursday night at Cal State Northridge and now has 1,638 career points, second only to Carrick DeHart, who completed his Gaucho career with 1,687 points.
Harris Named Second Team All-District 15
Alex Harris was named Second Team All-District 15 by the National Association of Basketball Coaches, it was announced Tuesday. Harris, a preseason Mid-Major All-American, was joined by Cal State Fullerton's Josh Akognon on the Second Team. It was the second such honor for Harris.
The Bob Williams File
Bob Williams is in his 10th season as the head coach at UC Santa Barbara. Last year his team recorded an overall record of 18-11 and a Big West mark of 9-5. The 18 wins were the most regular season wins by a Gaucho team since 1991-92 and it equaled the second most wins a Williams-coached UCSB team has ever had. Williams has led Santa Barbara to winning records in five of the last six seasons, the only exception being a 2004-05 team that was ravaged by injuries. He has guided UCSB to a pair of postseason appearances. In 2002-03, the Gauchos went 18-14 overall and 14-4 in league. The 2002-03 Big West mark earned Santa Barbara its first-ever Big West regular season championship along with a trip to the postseason National Invitation Tournament. Additionally, the success earned Williams his second Big West Coach of the Year award, his first coming after an impressive 1999 campaign. In 2001-02, Williams guided UCSB to its first Big West Conference Tournament title ever and first NCAA Tournament appearance in 12 years. Including this season, Williams' UCSB teams have posted a 162-129 (.557) overall record and an 99-64 (.607) record in Big West games. Prior to his arrival at UCSB, he 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' 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 a record of 351-229 (.605) at four-year schools. Finally, dating back to the conclusion of the 2005-06 season, Williams' Gauchos have posted a 48-21 (.696) overall record.
UCSB and Long Beach State opened Big West play a thousand years ago. Actually, it just seems like it was a thousand years ago. The Gauchos defeated the 49ers on Jan. 3 in Santa Barbara by a score of 79-64. Long Beach still leads the all-time series between the schools with a 52-50 edge. Last season, the 49ers swept the series, including the game at the Pyramid, 101-65. The 36-point margin was the largest for either team in the all-time series.
Eight-Game Streak Was Longest In A Long Time
First of all, get used to this note. It's not going anywhere. UCSB's eight-game winning streak, which was ended at North Carolina on Dec. 22, was the longest that a Gaucho team has put together since Bob Williams became head coach in 1998-99. It was also the longest winning streak since the 1988-89 team opened the year by winning 11 consecutive games and it equaled the second longest streak in school history. Santa Barbara also won eight games in a row in 1971-72, 1960-61 and 1940-41.
The Gauchos On The Road
The Gauchos are 9-4 in true road games this season. They had a five-game road winning streak ended at Utah State on Feb. 22. Still, UCSB has won its last six Big West road games. Most recently, the Gauchos have posted road wins at Cal State Northridge, 77-66 on Mar. 6, and at the University of the Pacific, 60-53 on Feb. 20. Prior to the win over the Tigers, the Gauchos won at UC Davis, UC Riverside, Cal Poly and Cal State Fullerton. They also have victories at Eastern Washington, Ball State, and Loyola Marymount. In addition to Utah State, Santa Barbara has dropped road games at North Carolina, Stanford and UC Irvine. UCSB has also gone a perfect 2-0 in neutral court games with wins over Northwestern State and Harvard at the Basketball Travelers Classic in Palo Alto, Calif. In 2006-07, the Gauchos recorded an all-time best 10-4 record on the road. Dating to the 2005-06 season, UCSB has gone 23-10 in its last 33 true road games.
The Gauchos At Home
UCSB completed its home season on Mar. 1 with a 73-55 win over UC Riverside, giving it an 11-3 record at the Thunderdome in 2007-08. The Gauchos opened the season by winning their first seven home games, stretching a two-season home winning streak to nine, but they went 4-3 to end the campaign. On Jan. 5, Cal State Northridge defeated UCSB 88-84, ending the nine-game home winning streak. The Gauchos also dropped games to Pacific (71-58 on Jan. 24) and UC Irvine (65-59 on Feb. 9). This season, Santa Barbara logged home wins over Cal State Fullerton, Cal Poly, UC Davis, Long Beach State, UC RIverside, UNLV, San Francisco, Montana State, Utah Valley, Pepperdine and Cal Poly Pomona. The nine game home winning streak that was ended by Northridge was the longest the program has had since it won 15 in a row bridging the 1987-88 and 1988-89 seasons. The Gauchos did end on a two-game home winning streak.
The Steal Curtain
UCSB had 11 steals on Mar. 6 at Cal State Northridge giving it 244 on the season, a new school record. The previous record of 236 steals was set in 1998-99, Bob Williams' first year as head coach of the Gauchos. In the last six games, the Gauchos have had 63 steals, an average of 10.5 per game. In a Feb. 14 win over Cal Poly, they tied their season-high with 16, equaling the third highest total in school history. They also had 16 on Dec. 5 against Pepperdine. UCSB has had 10 or more steals six times this season, including three times in he last six games. Last year, in 29 games, UCSB had a total of 180 steals.
Dialing Long Distance
UCSB made 11 three-point baskets last Saturday against UC Riverside. The 11 three-pointers equaled the Gauchos' highest total in Big West play, and it was the most since they produced 11 in a Jan. 30 win over the Highlanders. In Thursday night's win at Cal State Northridge, UCSB was 7-for-18 from outside the arc. On the season, Santa Barbara has now made 224 three-point baskets, a new school record. Previously, the school record was 219, set in 2002-03. In the last week's win over UCR, the Gauchos made 57.9% of their three-point attempts, their highest mark since making 60.0% in a Jan. 12 win at Cal State Fullerton. It was also the 10th time this season that they have made at least 50.0% of their three-point attempts. For the season, Santa Barbara is shooting 41.8% from three-point range, the top mark in the Big West Conference, and well above the school record of 40.3% set during the 2001-02 season.
Plenty Of Turnover
UCSB opponents are averaging 18.1 turnovers per game in 2007-08, an increase of 4.7 per game over the 13.4 they averaged in 2006-07. Last year, a Gaucho opponent had 20 or more turnovers just once, 21 by Pepperdine in a double overtime game. In 2007-08, UCSB has forced 20 or more turnovers nine times in 28 games, and only three opponents have had fewer than 15. On Mar. 6, the Gauchos forced Cal State Northridge into 18 turnovers. On Feb. 14, they forced Cal Poly into 24, the most by an opponent in league play. The highest total by a UCSB opponent this season was 28, in the opener against Northwestern State.
Some Magic Numbers
In Thursday's win at Cal State Northridge, UCSB won the rebounding battle by a 34-31 margin. It was just the 12th time in 29 games that the Gauchos have outrebounded their opponent and in those games, they have gone 11-1. In last Saturday's win over UC Riverside, Santa Barbara limited the Highlanders to 55 points. It was the third time in the last six games that UCSB has held an opponent under 60 points, and all three times have resulted in victories. UCSB has held teams below 60 points 10 times in 2007-08 and has gone a perfect 10-0 in those games. In fact, Santa Barbara has held two other opponents to 60 points and three to 61, going undefeated in those games as well. Thus, when the Gauchos have limit the opposition to 61 points or less, they have gone 15-0. Finally, UCSB attempted a season-high 39 rebounds on Thursday night, eight more than the host Matadors attempted. The Gauchos are now a perfect 11-0 when they attempt more free throws that their opponent. They are 13-1 when they make more charity shots that the opposition.
A Game Of Percentages
UCSB has won its last four Big West Conference games, and in the last three one of the main reasons has been outstanding shooting. In victories over UC Davis, Pacific, and UC Riverside, the Gauchos made 98 out of 195 field goal attempts, 50.3%. On the season, UCSB has made 50.0% or better from the floor 11 times.
Top One-Two Punches
Alex Harris and Chris Devine set a school record last year for most points by two players. This year, Harris and Devine have combined for 875 points, a figure that would rank 10th all-time, if not for the fact that Harris and James Powell have combined for 892, the seventh most by a one-two punch in school history.
# Players Season Points 1. A. Harris/C. Devine 2006-07 1,019 2. L. Davis/I. Jones 1991-92 1,014 3. C. DeHart/M. Doyle 1988-89 957 4. A. Harris/J. Powell 2007-08 929 C. DeHart/E. McArthur 1989-90 929 6. L. Davis/G. Gray 1990-91 928 7. M. Hull/B. Fullove 2001-02 893 8. R. Tutt/J. Merrill 1996-97 882 9. C. Henry/S. Fisher 1985-86 878 10. B. Fullove/M. Hull 2002-03 869 Note: The leading scorer is listed first
Fade To Black
The Gauchos have had more assists than turnovers six of the last eight games. Over that span, they have had 119 assists and just 97 turnovers and have gone into the black in the assist-to-turnover ratio category. Entering Saturday's game at Long Beach State, UCSB has totaled 430 assists as compared to a 'mere` 418 turnovers. On Jan. 24, the Gauchos had a season-low seven turnovers against Pacific. They have had eight turnovers twice, on Feb. 22 at Utah State and Jan. 3 against Long Beach State.
UCSB defeated Cal State Northridge by 11 points on Thursday night, 77-66. For the Gauchos, it was the second straight game in which they had logged a double-figure margin. On the season, 15 of their wins have come by margins of 10 or more. The largest margin of victory for Santa Barbara this season came on Dec. 19 at Ball State when the Cardinals fell by a 79-52 count. On the other side of the coin, the Gauchos have lost seven games this season, four of which have come by double-digit margins. The largest margin of defeat that UCSB has suffered this season was a 105-70 loss on Dec. 22 at North Carolina.
The Harris Poll
Senior guard Alex Harris was named Second Team All-District 15 by the National Association of Basketball Coaches on Tuesday. He continues to lead the Gauchos in scoring at 20.3 points per game, a figure that ranks second in the Big West Conference. In Thursday's game at Cal State Northridge, Harris scored 25 points and had a team-high seven rebounds. He was 5-for-13 from the field overall and 3-for-7 from three-point range. By scoring 25 against the Matadors, the senior from Alameda, Calif., has now scored 1,638 points in his career, second on UCSB's all-time career scoring list. The program's all-time leader, Carrick DeHart, finished his career with 1,687 points. Harris joined DeHart as one of just two players in school history to score 1,600 or more. In addition, Harris has now scored 569 points on the season, the fourth most all-time. It marks the sixth time in UCSB history that a player has scored 500 or more points in a season and Harris is the only player to have accomplished the feat twice. He had 611 last season, the third most all-time. Harris has scored 13 or more points in all 28 of his appearances this season and he has scored in double-figures in 35 straight dating back to the 2006-07 season. He has led or tied for the team-lead in scoring 21 times this year, going for 20 or more 14 times and 25 or more seven times. He scored a season-high 31 points on Jan. 19 at Cal Poly. In addition to scoring, Harris is second on the team in three-point baskets. By making 3-of-7 on Mar. 6, he has now made 69 out of his 155 attempts, 44.5%. Harris has made at least one three-point basket in 27 of 28 games. In addition, he has hit two or more 22 times, and three or more 10 times. Harris made a career-high six three-point baskets, in eight attempts, on Dec. 7 against Utah Valley. In his career, he has now hit 189 out of 463, 40.8%, the fourth most makes and the fourth highest percentage in UCSB history. Prior to his 31-point game at Cal Poly, Harris' season-high was 29 points on Nov. 24 against Montana State. In that game, he had career-highs for free throws, 15, and free throw attempts, 18. On Thursday, he was 12-of-16 from the charity stripe and on the year, Harris has gone to the free throw line 192 times, the most in the Big West. He is tied for third on the team in rebounding at 3.8 per game, and he has had at least five in each of the last four games.
Harris On UCSB's Career Lists
Category Statistic Rank Points 1,638 2nd Average 14.2 ppg t-5th Field Goals 499 10th Field Goal Attempts 1,132 5th Free Throws 451 1st Free Throw Attempts 575 1st Free Throw Pct. 78.4% 10th 3-Pt. Field Goals 189 4th 3-Pt. Field Goal Att. 463 4th 3-Pt. Field Goal Pct. 40.8% 4th Steals 102 10th
The Devine File
Junior forward Chris Devine scored 10 points and collected four rebounds in Thursday's win at Cal State Northridge. Devine attempted just three shots against the Matadors, making two. One of his field goals was a three-pointer. Devine had struggled offensively in three games prior to Thursday. In the three contests, he has averaged just 6.0 points, making 6-of-20 shots from the field, 30.0%. It marked the first time this season that Devine had scored fewer than 10 points in three consecutive games, and the stretch came on the heels of a stretch in which he had 15 or more in three straight, his longest such streak in league play this year. Despite his recent troubles, Devine is averaging 12.2 points per game, third on the team. He has scored 10 or more points 19 times in his 28 appearances this year, but just nine times in the last 18 games. He scored in double-figures in the first 10 games of the season. He scored a season-high 24 on Jan. 5 against Cal State Northridge, and his other 20 point game came at Ball State on Dec. 19 when he had 22. On Jan. 24 against Pacific, Devine became the 22nd player in UCSB history to move past the 1,000 point mark. He enters Saturday's regular season finale with a career total of 1,104 points, a figure that ranks 19th all-time. He needs 13 to move into 18th-place. Devine is second on the team in rebounding at 5.1 per game. He has had seven or more 10 times and he had a season-high nine on Dec. 1 at Loyola Marymount. He had eight on Feb. 7 against Cal State Fullerton, his highest total in the last 14 games. Devine is second on the team in field goal percentage at 50.4%. A Preseason All-Big West selection, Devine is second on the team in steals with 34. He has had two or more steals 11 times and four in a Dec. 22 game at North Carolina. On Thursday, against Northridge, he made his ninth three-point basket of the season, his firrst since he made a pair on Jan. 12 at Cal State Fullerton. Devine has now made nine this year.
Old Buddy, Old Powell
Sophomore guard James Powell cooled off a bit from three-point range in Thursday's win at Cal State Northridge, making 2-of-5. In the previous game, a home win over UC Riverside, he made a career-best 7-for-8 from outside the arc, and in the game before that, Feb. 22 at Utah State, he was 6-for-10. In the last four games, Powell has connected on 17-of-25 three-point tries, 68.0%. He had 12 points in the win over the Matadors, giving him five straight games in double-figures, equaling the longest such streak of his career. A week ago, he had 24 against Riverside, one shy of his career-high of 25, set at Riverside on Jan. 30. Powell's recent three-point binge has pushed him past Alex Harris and into the team-lead with 70 three-pointers and he is leads the team in three-point field goal percentage at 46.4%. His 70 three-point baskets rank in a tie for fifth on UCSB's all-time single-season list and his 46.4% success rate would be second all-time. After scoring fewer than 10 points in consecutive games for the first time since the first three games of the year, Powell has bounced back with his five consecutive games in double-figures and he is now averaging 12.4 points per game, second on the team. In all, he has been in double-figures 19 times this season, all in the last 26 games, and he has scored 20 or more six times, including five times in the last 13 games. Since scoring a total of 17 points through the first three games, Powell has averaged 13.3 points per game. Since opening the year by going 2-for-12 from three-point range, Powell has made 68 out of his last 139 attempts, 48.9%. He has made at least one three-point basket in 16 straight games and 26 times in 29 games this season. He has made two or more in nine straight and 21 times, and three or more 10 times. Powell is averaging 2.2 assists per game, second on the team, and he has had two or more in 10 of the last 13 games. He tied a career-high with six on Jan. 5 against Cal State Northridge. He is also leads the team with 35 steals and he has had two in each of the last three games.
Justin Joins In
Sophomore guard Justin Joyner continues to lead UCSB in assists, at 3.7 per game, and the Big West in assist-to-turnover ratio, at 2.10-to-1.00. Joyner had three points, three assists, three steals, and one rebound in the win at Cal State Northridge. He is now averaging 3.8 points and 2.7 rebounds per game. He has had more turnovers than assists in just two games this season (Four turnovers and two assists on Nov. 11 at Stanford and four turnovers and three assists on Mar. 6 at Northridge.), and in his last 22 games, he has 83 assists and just 36 turnovers. He has had just 18 turnovers in the last 11 games, a span of 293 minutes. Joyner has had a season-high seven assists twice, against Utah Valley and UC Irvine. In the game against Irvine, Joyner also had a career-high 16 points, making 4-of-6 three-point attempts. In all, he has produced three or more assists 20 times this season and UCSB has gone 15-5 in those games. In addition to his pair of seven assist games, he has had two games with six assists and three games with five assists. Also, after going 0-for-5 from the field over a five game span, he has gone 15-of-28 in the last six games, 53.6%. He has improved his overall field goal percentage to 40.0%. In fact, since opening the year by making just 10 of his first 37 shots in the first nine games, he has hit 30-of-63, 47.6%, in the last 20. Joyner has made 15 out of 48 three-pointers this season, but 11 have come in four games, two apiece against UNLV and Ball State, three at Fullerton and his career-high four on Feb. 9 against UC Irvine. Since opening the year by making just two out of 12 three-point attempts over the first six games, Joyner has gone 13-of-36, 36.1%. He is averaging 2.7 rebounds per game and tied his season-high with five on Feb. 20 at Pacific. Joyner is third on the team with 32 steals, including 12 in the last six games. He has tied his career-high with three steals on four occasions this season.
Ivan The Good
Senior forward Ivan Elliott bounced back from a pair of subpar offensive performances with two of his best in wins over Cal State Northridge and UC Riverside. Elliott had just four points and five rebounds on Feb. 22 at Utah State, fouling out in just 20 minutes. In the game prior to that, a win at Pacific, he had just six points in 25 minutes. On Mar. 1 against the Highlanders, Elliott made 6-of-7 shots from the field, including both of his three-point attempts, finishing with 16 points, his fourth highest total of the season. He also grabbed a team-high six rebounds. On Thursday at Northridge, he also had 16 points, making 6-of-9 shots from the field, and he had five rebounds. Despite his six-point performance at Pacific, he has scored 56 points in his last four Big West games, an average of 14.0 per game. Over that span, Elliott has made 22-of-30 shots from the field, 73.3%. He has improved his overall field goal percentage to 56.8%, best on the team. In the first game of the current three-game Big West run, he had 18 points, making 8-of-9 shots, in a Feb. 16 win at UC Davis. Elliott scored a career-high 22 points in a Feb. 7 win over Cal State Fullerton. Elliott is now averaging 9.6 points and a team-leading 5.8 rebounds per game. He has scored 10 or more points 14 times this season. He is second on the Gauchos in three-point field goal percentage at 46.2%. He has slumped from three-point range in recent games, making just three out of 15 attempts in the last 10 games. Elliott made a career-high three three-pointers on Nov. 24 against Montana State, and he has made two on six other occasions. In 2006-07, the native San Franciscan made just 5-of-13 shots from outside the arc, but this year he has drilled 24 out of his 52 attempts. Overall, in the last nine games, Elliott has gone 40 out of 60 from the field, 66.7%. In the last 10 games, he has made 40 out of his 52 two-point attempts, 76.9%. Elliott also leads the team in blocked shots with 26. He now has 45 career blocks and needs four to enter UCSB's career top-10 in the category. He has emerged in the steal category as well. While he has 27 steals on the season, 12 have come in the last eight games. He had career-highs of four steals and four assists on Feb. 14 against Cal Poly. Elliott has had a season-high nine rebounds twice this year, on Dec. 29 at Eastern Washington and then again on Jan. 24 against Pacific. He has had six or more 18 times in 28 games.
A Piece Of The Pajevic (Pronounced Pie-uh-vich)
Senior forward Nedim Pajevic is averaging 5.4 points, 3.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game. He had one of his bet games of the season on Thursday night at Cal State Northridge, playing 20 minutes, scoring seven points and collecting five rebounds. Pajevic made 3-of-6 shots overall, including his only three-point attempt. The five rebounds equaled his highest total in the last seven games, and his seven points were two short of his high in Big West play this season. Pajevic has been solid on the boards in recent games, averaging 4.5 per game in the last four games and grabbing at least four in each. Through 29 games, Pajevic has had four or more rebounds 15 times. He had a personal-best 10 rebounds on Nov. 20 against San Francisco, recording a double-double in the process as he also scored 10 points. Pajevic's double-double against the Dons is the only one recorded by a UCSB player this season and, in fact, it is the only double-figure rebounding game by a Gaucho. He scored his season-high 16 points in the second game of the year, a win over Harvard, and he has had 10 or more six times, the last time coming when he went for 12 in a Dec. 22 loss at North Carolina. Prior to the win over the Matadors, Pajevic had struggled with his shooting, making just 6-of-21 shots overall over a five game span, 28.6%. Finally, the three-pointer he hit in the last game was his second of the season and his first since Nov. 15 against Cal Poly Pomona. He had missed 11 in a row.
Sophomore guard Paul Roemer continues to give the Gauchos valuable minutes as a reserve in the backcourt. In the win over Cal State Northridge, Roemer played 16 minutes, and while he had just one point, he did had two steals, three assists and he played well defensively. He is averaging 2.5 points, 1.2 rebounds, and 1.7 assists per game overall, but in the last five games, he has averaged 4.0 points, 2.5 assists, and 1.2 rebounds. In the last five games, he has also made 6-of-12 shots from the field, 50.0%. Roemer had a career-high 12 points, on four three-pointers, on Jan. 10 at UC Irvine. In addition to his 12-point game at UC Irvine, Roemer went for 10 in the season-opener against Northwestern State, his only other double-figure game this season. He had a career-high five assists on Feb. 7 against Cal State Fullerton, and a career-high three steals on Dec. 22 at North Carolina. In recent games, Roemer has also become one of the team's top shot blockers. He had a pair on Mar. 1 against UC Riverside, giving him six in the last eight games. He also had two on Feb. 7 against Fullerton. In 2006-07, Roemer played 132 minutes in 16 games. This year, he has played in 29 games, logging 457 minutes.
Strike A Posley
Junior guard D.J. Posley returned to action against UC Riverside after missing four games with the flu. In his return, Posley was scoreless, missing his only shot, but he had a pair of rebounds. He played a season-low 10 minutes in the game against the Highlanders. On Thursday at Cal State Northridge, Posley played 19 minutes, scoring three points, pulling down three rebounds, passing off for a pair of assists, and coming-up with one steal. The points were his first since he had six on Jan. 26 against UC Davis, and outside of the stats, he played his typical outstanding defense. Posley is averaging 2.7 points, 2.0 rebounds, 1.0 steals, and 1.0 assists per game. He tallied a season-high seven points on Dec. 5 against Pepperdine. He has also had six points three times.
Freshman Jordan Weiner has made the most of his increased playing time in recent games. Although he didn't play Thursday and was scoreless in 10 minutes against UC Riverside, he has scored 15 points in the last five games, 3.0 per game. Despite playing just 117 minutes in 19 games this season, Weiner is tied for fourth on the team with 15 three-point baskets. He made a career-high four three-pointers and scored a career-high 12 points on Dec. 19 at Ball State.