UCSB Takes On Florida in NCAA Second Round Thursday in Tampa
March 14, 2011
Game No. 32<
2011 NCAA Tournament - Second Round
Thursday, March 17, 2011
Time of Game - 3:50 p.m. (PDT)
No. 15 UC Santa Barbara vs. No. 2 Florida
at St. Pete Times Forum - Tampa, Fla.
Radio: AM 1290 KZSB in Santa Barbara
On-Line Video: NCAA.com
Game available on Gametracker
UCSB Plays Florida In NCAA First Round Game Thursday
UC Santa Barbara, the Big West Conference Tournament champions, will play Florida, the SEC Eastern Division champion and tournament runner-up, in the second round of the 2011 NCAA Tournament on Thursday. The Gauchos and Gators have never met. The closest they came to playing was at the 1993 Rainbow Classic in Honolulu but UCSB dropped a first round game to Louisville and that was that.
Gauchos Return To NCAA Tournament For Second Straight Year
UCSB's victory in the 2011 Big West Conference Tournament earned the program its fifth NCAA Division I Tournament berth and its second straight. This marks the first time in school history that the program has advanced to consecutive NCAA Tournaments. It is the third automatic berth that the Gauchos have received, having also won the league tournament in 2002. Santa Barbara received at-large bids to the NCAA Tournament in 1988 and 1990. UCSB also advanced to the NCAA Tournament in 1961, but at the time it competed at the College Division level.
You Know The Old Saying...
There is an old adage in college basketball that says it's tough to beat a team three times in the same season. Whether that is true or not in the big picture, who knows? In UCSB's case, it was absolutely true at the Big West Tournament. During the regular season, the Gauchos lost twice each to Pacific, Cal State Northridge and Long Beach State. In the league tournament, however, they turned the tables.
The Gaucho Record
UCSB enters the NCAA Tournament with a record of 18-13. The Gauchos struggled to an 8-8 record in the Big West Conference, qualified for the league tournament as the No. 5 seed and then rattled off wins over three higher seeded teams to earn the conference's automatic bid. Santa Barbara defeated No. 4 Pacific (79-67) in the first round, No. 3 Cal State Northridge (83-67) in the semifinals and then top-seeded Long Beach State (64-56) in the championship game. UCSB has now been to three Big West championship games and won all three.
Johnson Named Big West Tournament MVP After Leading Gauchos To Title
UCSB junior guard Orlando Johnson was named selected the Most Valuable Player of the Big West Tournament after leading the fifth-seeded Gauchos to the their second straight championship and NCAA Tournament berth. It was his second straight tournament MVP honor. Johnson set a Santa Barbara record when he poured in 32 points in the team's 79-67 first round win over fourth-seeded Pacific. He set another mark when he made five three-point baskets, in five attempts, as he scored 30 points an 83-63 semifinal win over No. 3 Cal State Northridge. In the championship game against top-seeded Long Beach State, which had won 11 straight games and 17 of 19, Johnson scored 23, including 18 in the pivotal second half, as the Gauchos won 64-56. In the three games, he averaged 28.3 points, 3.3 rebounds and 2.3 assists while shooting 51.9% overall and making 12-of-18 three-point attempts, 66.7%. Fellow-juniors Jaimé Serna (12.0 points, 7.3 rebounds, 68.4% from the field and 10-for-10 from the free throw line) and James Nunnally (14.3 points, 7.0 rebounds, 50.0% from the field, four three-pointers and 9-for-10 from the free tnrow line) were also named to the All-Tournament Team.
The Gauchos In The NCAA Tournament
UCSB is making its fifth appearance in the NCAA Tournament and its second in a row. The Gauchos advanced to the tournament as an at-large team in 1988 and 1990, and as an automatic qualifier in 2002, 2010 and 2011.
Round Opponent Date Result 1988 at Cincinnati, Ohio 1st Maryland 3/18/88 L, 92-82 1990 at Knoxville, Tenn. 1st Houston 3/15/90 W, 70-66 2nd Michigan State 3/17/90 L, 62-58 2002 at Albuquerque, N.M. 1st Arizona 3/14/02 L, 86-81 2010 at Milwaukee, Wisc. 1st Ohio State 3/19/10 L, 68-51
Probable Starters - Quick Fact
F 0 Jaimé Serna - Averaged 12.0 points, 7.3 rebounds and shot 68.4% at Big West Tournament.
G 11 Justin Joyner - Has averaged 6.0 assists in the last eight games.
F 21 James Nunnally - His 508 points are the eighth most in UCSB history.
F 32 Jon Pastorek - Had 20 rebounds in final two league tourney games, 10.0 per game.
G 33 Orlando Johnson - Had 23 points in Big West final and set new record for points in a season, 653.
Probable Reserves - Quick Fact
G 3 Jordan Weiner - In Big West first round he made 100th three-pointer of his career, now has 103.
G 10 Kyle Boswell -Has made 11-of-23 shots from outside the three-point arc, 47.8%.
G 20 Will Brew -While he is ranked seventh on the team in minutes, he is fourth in steals with 25.
G 24 Christian Peterson - Has 12 rebounds in 33 minutes over his last eight appearances.
F 25 Lucas Devenny - Played two total minutes in two games at the Big West Tournament.
F 41 Seth Kamphoefner - Senior has played in two games this season.
G 43 Troy Leaf - Has scored 33 of his 61 points in the last seven games.
C 55 Greg Somogyi - Has 133 career blocked shots ranking him third in school history.
Johnson Also Earns All-District Honor
In addition to being named First Team All-Big West for the second year in a row, Orlando Johnson was named First Team All-District 9 by the National Association of Basketball Coaches. He earned first team recognition last year as well and is the only UCSB player ever to do so.
A Little More Postseason History
UCSB will be making its fifth appearance in the Big Dance, but the Gauchos have gone to several Little Dances as well. Santa Barbara played in the National Invitation Tournament in 2008, 2003, 1993, 1992, and 1989. In 1960, UCSB went to the third round of the NCAA College Division Tournament, and in 1941, the Gauchos won three games at the NAIA Tournament in Kansas City.
The Gauchos Away From Home
UCSB has a 9-9 record in games away from home in 2010-11. The Gauchos are 5-8 in true road games and 4-1 in neutral site contests. Their three straight wins in the Big West Tournament pulled their record in all games away from home even at 9-9.
Johnson Ties Single-Game Scoring Record
Junior guard Orlando Johnson scored 39 points in UCSB's 93-86 overtime win over UC Davis on Feb. 5, tying the school record for points in a game. The mark was first set by Scott Fisher on Nov. 30, 1985 in a game at Montana State. Johnson's 39 points were the most ever scored by a Gaucho player at the Thunderdome and, for that matter, at home, breaking the record of 37 set by Don Ford on Mar. 1, 1975, in a game against Portland at Robertson Gymnasium.
UCSB Sinlge-Season Scoring Top-Ten
1. Orlando Johnson 2011 653 2. Raymond Tutt 1997 649 3. Lucius Davis 1992 644 4. Alex Harris 2008 627 4. Alex Harris 2007 611 6. York Gross 1983 564 7. Orlando Johnson 2010 540 8. Don Ford 1975 510 9 James Nunnally 2011 508 10. Raymond Tutt 1998 492
Men Of Steal
UCSB had just three steals in tournament championship game against Long Beach State, but for the season, the Gauchos now have 228 in their 31 games, the second highest total in school history. Justin Joyner leads the team with 50 steals on the year, the seventh most in school history. In fact, Joyner now has a career total of 133 a figure that ranks third in school history. He needs one more to move into second-place on the school's all-time list.
A Final Four To Remember: Finally A Four-Game Streak
UCSB's timing on its first four-game winning streak of the season was impeccable. The Gauchos have won four straight games entering the NCAA Tournament. In fact, prior to the current four-game run, the Gauchos had won three in a row just one time and that came during the first two weeks of December when they beat Loyola Marymount, Santa Clara and UNLV.
Gauchos Guaranteed Sixth Straight Winning Record
With an 18-13 record entering the NCAA Tournament, UCSB is guaranteed of its sixth consecutive winning season. The streak of consecutive winning seasons is the longest during the tenure of head coach Bob Williams and it equals the longest stretch in school history. Previously, Ralph Barkey guided the program to six straight winning campaigns from 1970-76.
Before March Madness, The Gauchos Experience March Gladness
Traditionally, Bob Williams teams shine in the month of February. Not so this year as the Gauchos limped to a 3-6 record during the year's second month. But then there was March. Ahhh, March. Forget March Madness, UCSB has gone a perfect 4-0 this month and that has led to an NCAA Tournament berth and some serious March Gladness.
Johnson Breaks School Record For Points In A Season
When he scored 23 points in the Big West Tournament championship game against Long Beach State, Orlando Johnson surpassed Raymond Tutt's UCSB single-season scoring record. Tutt tallied 649 points during the 1996-97 season and Johnson enters the NCAA Tournament with 653 points this season.
Johnson Named First Team All-Big West, Nunnally Honorable Mention
UCSB junior guard Orlando Johnson was named First Team All-Big West for the second consecutive year and junior James Nunnally was named honorable mention. Johnson, who enters the NCAA Tournament averaging 21.1 points, 6.3 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game, was not only a first team honoree in 2009-10, but he was also the league's Player of the Year. The native of Seaside, Calif., also won his second consecutive Big West scoring title. Johnson is the first Gaucho player since Alex Harris to be named first team all-league in consecutive years. Harris earned his honors in 2006-07 and 2007-08. Overall, four UCSB players have accomplished the feat. Johnson is the first player to do so as a sophomore and junior. Nunnally was a second team all-league selection in 2009-10.
Johnson, Nunnally Join 1,000 Point Club
Orlando Johnson scored 31 points in UCSB's Feb. 10 win at UC Riverside and in doing so, he became the 25th Gaucho ever to achieve the 1,000 point mark for his career. The junior hit the mark in just his 52nd game at Santa Barbara and now has 1,193, 16th all-time. On Jan. 29, in a game against Cal State Northridge, junior James Nunnally became the 24th player in school history to score 1,000 points. Nunnally now has 1,178 career points, 18th all-time.
Johnson-Nunnally Shatter All-Time One-Two Punch Record, Equal Single Game Mark
Orlando Johnson and James Nunnally continue to rank 1-2 on the team in scoring. Johnson is averaging 21.1 points per game while Nunnally is at 16.4. As a duo, Johnson and Nunnally have combined for 1,161 points, an average of 37.5 points per game, 54.8% of the team's total. Their total of 1,161 points is the most that two players have combined for in a single-season in UCSB history. The previous all-time record of 1,019 points was set in 2007-08 by Alex Harris and James Powell and in 2006-07 by Harris and Chris Devine. Johnson and Nunnally also tied the school record for combined points in one game when, on Feb. 5, in an overtime win over UC Davis, Johnson tied a school record with 39 points and Nunnally added 23. The 62 points equaled the highest two-player combined output of Scott Fisher (39) and Conner Henry(23) in a game at Montana State on Nov. 30, 1985.
Johnson's Double-Figure Streak Ends In Regular Season Finale, Starts Anew
Entering the regular season's final game against Cal Poly, Orlando Johnson had scored in double-figures 57 times in his 57 games as a Gaucho. It was the longest streak of consecutive double-figure scoring in school history. In the game against the Mustangs, Johnson was held to six points, ending the streak. He then went on to score 32, 30 and 23 in three Big West Tournament games and has now scored 10 or more in 60 of 61 games as a Gaucho. Last year, Johnson became just the second UCSB player on record to score in double-figures in every game over an entire season. Previously, Raymond Tutt (1996-97) was the only player to have done so.
Serna Is Certainly Bouncing Back
Junior forward Jaimé Serna has really started to re-emerge for the Gauchos. Sidelined for six of seven games at mid-season with a strained groin, Serna struggled to regain his edge and conditioning when he first returned. In recent games, however, that has turned around. In the Big West Tournament title game, he played 29 minutes, his highest total since the injury, and went for 14 points and eight rebounds. In the final two games of the league tournament, Serna averaged 15.0 points and 8.5 rebounds while making 11-of-15 shots from the field, 73.3%, and all eight of his free throw attempts. Going back even further, during UCSB's current four-game winning streak, he has averaged 12.0 points, 6.7 rebounds and 1.5 blocked shots while making 18-of-25 shots, 72.0%, and 12-of-14 free throw attempts, 85.7%
Outstanding Defensive Run Pushes Gauchos Into Postseason
UCSB limited Long Beach State to a mere 28.8% shooting in the championship game of the Big West Tournament, including 23.5% from three-point range. The game continued a trend for UCSB. In their last seven games - against Boise State, Cal State Northridge, Long Beach State, Cal Poly, Pacific, Cal State Northridge again and Long Beach State again - the Gauchos have limited their opposition to 135-of-410 from the field, a 32.9%. Five of the last seven have shot below 40.0%, three of the last four have been below 30.0% and the last four have gone 75-of-252 overall, 29.8% and 21-of-81 from three-point range, 25.9%. In the regular season finale on Mar. 5, Cal Poly made 16-of-63, 25.9%, the lowest mark by a Santa Barbara opponent this season. UCSB has now held four opponents below 30.0% shooting in a game this year, including UNLV, which was ranked 20th in the nation at the time, which was held to 29.0% in a win on Dec. 15.
The Return Of A Shooting Touch
In three games prior to the Big West Tournament, UCSB lost its shooting touch. In the three games, two of which were losses, the Gauchos made just 59 out of their 162 field goal attempts, a paltry 36.4%. Over that same span, they hit just 18-of-61 three-point attempts, 29.5%. In the league tournament, something must have clicked. In the three games at Honda Center (Where the Anaheim Ducks play and the possible future home of the Sacramento Kings), UCSB made 73 of its 147 shots, 49.7%. In the championship game against Long Beach State, the Gauchos made 50.0%, a far cry from the 36.1% they made against the 49ers just two weeks earlier and an even farther cry from the 33.3% they made against them on Dec. 28. Santa Barbara also picked up the pace from three-point territory as it made 25 of its 48 attempts, 52.1%. Finally, the 57.1% that UCSB made from the field in the Big West Tournament first round game against Pacific was the team's highest percentage since it made 61.7% against Loyola Marymount on Dec. 1.
Free Throws Remain A Strength
Despite a season-worst 6-for-14 performance in their last game, the Gauchos continue to count free throw shooting as one of their strengths. UCSB was 37-of-48, 77.1%, from the free throw line its Big West Conference semifinal win over Cal State Northridge on Mar. 11. Both the attempts and makes rank as the third highest totals in school history. The Gauchos are now shooting 75.5% on the season, a figure that would rank third on the school's all-time list if it were maintained. Santa Barbara has shot 80.0% or better from the line in 13 out of 31 games this season. Three Santa Barbara regulars (James Nunnally, Orlando Johnson and Jordan Weiner) are shooting 80.8% or better and another, Jaimé Serna has made his last 12 in a row and is shooting 75.0%.
As a team, UCSB has blocked 130 shots in 2010-11, tied for the second most in school history. Center Greg Somogyi leads the way with 58. Jaimé Serna, who missed six games because of injury, has blocked 26 shots while Orlando Johnson and Jon Pastorek have 16 and 12 respectively. Both Somogyi and Serna had five blocked shots in the team's three-game run through the Big West Tournament. In the Gauchos' Mar. 5 finale against Cal Poly, UCSB set a new school record by blocking 14 of the Mustangs' shots. Somogyi led the swatfest with six, his second highest total ever and tied for the second most in school history. Last year, in a game at Fresno State, the 7-foot-3 Hungarian had a record eight blocked shots. In addition to his six, Pastorek (4) and Johnson (3) each added career-highs against Cal Poly.
Win Over UNLV Was First Over Ranked Opponent Since 1993
On Dec. 15, UCSB defeated UNLV by a 68-62 score. At the time, the Rebels were ranked 22nd in the nation. The win was the program's first over a ranked opponent since the Gauchos defeated UNLV on Feb. 22, 1993. The game, which was played at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, was UCSB's first road win over a ranked opponent since Jan. 7, 1988 when it also defeated UNLV. In its next game, the Gauchos played 10th-ranked (now 6th) San Diego State, their highest ranked opponent since Nov. 21, 2008 when they hosted top-ranked North Carolina at the Thunderdome in Santa Barbara.
Forget rebounds, a pretty good statistic to look at to figure out whether or not UCSB is going to win a game is field goal percentage. The Gauchos have recorded a near perfect 18-2 record when finishing a game with a higher field goal percentage than its opponent (See below for the two exceptions). On the other hand, when an opponent has a better field goal percentage, UCSB has gone 0-11.
Where's The Justice?
A pair of UCSB's best defensive efforts this year came in games at Pacific and at home against Boise State. In the Gauchos' game at Stockton on Jan. 8, they limited the Tigers to 36.7 shooting overall and 31.6% from three-point range. The result? A 57-54 loss when Pacific made a three-point basket at the buzzer. On Feb. 19, UCSB limited Boise State to 33.3% shooting overall and 26.3% from outside the arc. The result? A 78-76 defeat when the Broncos made a buzzer-beating put-back at the end of overtime.