UCSB, 1-0, Travels to Wisconsin to Play 21st-Ranked Badgers on Tuesday

UCSB, 1-0, Travels to Wisconsin to Play 21st-Ranked Badgers on Tuesday

Nov. 22, 2004

The Schedule
Game No. 2
Tuesday, November 23, 2004 at 5:00 p.m. (PST)
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos at University of Wisconsin Badgers
at Wisconsin's Kohl Center
Radio: KTLK 1340 AM

Game No. 3
Saturday, November 27, 2004 at 2:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos at University of San Francisco Dons
at USF's Memorial Gymnasium
Radio: KTLK 1340 AM

The Gaucho Record
UC Santa Barbara opened the regular season on Friday with an improbable 80-72 overtime win on the road at San Diego State. Playing with just nine healthy, or relatively healthy players, the Gauchos led most of the game before pulling it out in the overtime. UCSB finished the exhibition schedule with a perfect 2-0 record. The Gauchos opened exhibition play on November 4 and recorded a narrow win over Cal State Los Angeles (56-49). On November 12, UCSB had a comfortable 78-60 win over Westmont College. In 2003-04, Santa Barbara posted an overall record of 16-12 and a Big West mark of 10-8. The Gauchos finished third in the league's regular season standings and lost to Cal State Northridge in the first round of the Big West Tournament.

UCSB Heads To Big Ten Country
Santa Barbara will play at Wisconsin on Tuesday night. The game will be the first-ever meeting between the schools and it will be the Gauchos' game at a Big Ten opponent since December 14, 1993, when UCSB lost at Ohio State, 79-56. In fact, the Gauchos have not played a Big Ten opponent anywhere since the game against the Buckeyes.

On The Radio
All UC Santa Barbara radio games are broadcast live in Santa Barbara by ClearChannel Santa Barbara. Most of the games are broadcast on KTLK 1340-AM, but three will be carried on KTMS 990-AM. While his picture in the media guide may be a bit fuzzy, KEYT-TV Sports Director Gerry Fall is in his first season as the play-by-play voice of the Gauchos and he is as clear as can be. Former Los Angeles Lakers' Superstar Don Ford will again be mikeside for the color commentary. Much to the disgust, chagrin and revulsion of the Santa Barbara radio-listening community, UCSB Assistant Athletics Director for Media Relations Bill Mahoney will handle the color commentary for selected road games.

The Bob Williams Show
The Bob Williams show will be aired each Tuesday night from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on KTMS 990 AM in Santa Barbara. Coach Williams will talk about past and upcoming games, interview Gaucho players and welcome guests from the Santa Barbara sports community.

Depleted UCSB Outlasts San Diego State In Opener
UC Santa Barbara, playing with just nine players available, had to go overtime, but it posted an 80-72 overtime win on the road at San Diego State on Friday. After falling behind 3-0 to open the game, the Gauchos went on a 14-5 run to open a 14-7 lead. UCSB did not trail again in the first half, and led much of the second half, but when Aztec forward Marcus Slaughter scored on a put-back at the buzzer, the score was tied at the end of regulation. The Gauchos, however, outscored SDSU 17-9 in the overtime to post the win. Freshman guard Alex Harris scored eight of his 15 points in the OT, including a pair of three-pointers, to lead the charge. Senior point guard Chrismen Oliver scored seven of his career-high 17 points, including a three-pointer and all four of his free throw attempts, in the OT. Junior Josh Davis, playing mostly at the unfamiliar power forward spot, had a career-high 18 points, including four three-point baskets, to go along with five rebounds, three assists and four steals. Senior forward Casey Cook had 15 points, four rebounds, three assists and three steals before fouling out near the end of regulation. Slaughter finished with 28 points for SDSU, including the Aztecs final 16 points in regulation.

The Injury Update
There is little change in the UCSB injury report as the Gauchos head into Thanksgiving week. Santa Barbara will once again have nine players available when it takes on defending Big Ten Tournament Champion Wisconsin on Tuesday. Starting junior guard Cecil Brown remains sidelined until late-December or early-January with a partially torn medial collateral ligament in his right knee. Starting junior forward Cameron Goettsche will be out about another week with a strained groin. Reserve sophomore forward David Kennedy has a stress fracture in his right leg, and is expected to remain on the sidelines until some point in late December. Redshirt freshman forward Chris Devine had surgery on his right knee prior to the opening of practice in October and he will be sidelined until mid-January. Sophomore forward Glenn Turner, who suffered a severe sprained ankle prior to the opening of practice. He was cleared to play last week and actually logged a career-high 22 minutes in the win at San Diego State. Junior guard Michael Chambers suffered a strained groin in practice before the road trip to San Diego, but he played ten minutes anyway.

Possible Starters - Notes
G - Chrismen Oliver - Had a career-high 17 points in a career-high 41 minutes at SDSU.
G - Joe See - Was just 2-for-10 from the field and 0-for-7 from three-point range at SDSU.
G - Alex Harris - Scored 15 points, including eight in OT, in college debut.
F - Josh Davis - Had career-high 18 points, including 4-of-5 three-pointers at SDSU.
F - Casey Cook - Scored 15 points, tying his fifth-highest mark ever, in the opener.

Possible Reserves - Notes
G - Michael Chambers - Went for two points and three boards in his Gaucho debut.
G - Derek Rasp - Walk-on made 1-of-2 from three-point range and had two boards at SDSU.
F - Glenn Turner - Grabbed career-high and team-high seven rebounds in opener.
F - Chris Moore - Made his only field goal in eight minutes of opener.

The Infirmary - Notes
G - Cecil Brown - Knee injury has sidelined him until late December or early-January.
F - Cameron Goettsche - Injured groin has him sidelined until probably late-November.
F - Chris Devine - Knee injury him out until mid-January.
F - David Kennedy - Stress fracture in right leg has him sidelined until December.
F - Todd Follmer - Expected to redshirt the 2004-05 season.

The Bob Williams File
Bob Williams is in his seventh season as the head coach at UC Santa Barbara. Last year, he guided the Gauchos to a 16-12 overall record and a 10-8 mark in Big West Conference play. He has also guided UCSB to three straight winning seasons, the first time the program has accomplished the feat since 1987-88 through 1989-90. In 2002-03, Williams' 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 postseason trip to the National Invitation Tournament. In addition, 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 steered UCSB to its first Big West Conference Tournament Championship ever and first NCAA Tournament appearance in 12 years. Including this season, Williams' UCSB teams have posted a 97-79 (.551) overall record and a 66-36 (.647) 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 286-179 (.615) at four-year schools.

Balancing Act Pays Off
Several things were notable in UCSB's season-opening win at San Diego State. Obviously the first thing that comes to mind are the injuries, and with me pounding that into your heads, how could it be any different. Another thing that was striking was the scoring distribution. Not only did the Gauchos have four players score in double-figures, they had four players score 15 points or more. Junior swingman Josh Davis led the way with 18, while senior guard Chrismen Oliver added 17 and senior forward Casey Cook and freshman guard Alex Harris each chipped-in 15. At no point last season did UCSB have four players with 15 points or more. In fact, just once did they have three players with 15 or more, a blowout win over the University of San Diego. The last time four players scored 15 or more in a game for the Gauchos was on February 3, 1996. In that game, an 85-72 win at Cal State Fullerton Lelan McDougal (20), Danee Prince (18), Kealon Wallace (16) and Bakir Allen (15) turned the trick.

Free, But Valuable
In the first half of the season-opener at San Diego State, UCSB made just 1-of-5 shots from the free throw line. Although they `improved' to 4-of-9, 44.4%, by the end of regulation, it still seemed a pretty safe bet that missed free throws would cost the team. In the overtime, however, the free throw situation turned completely around. Led by a 4-for-4 OT free throw line performance by Chrismen Oliver, the team was a perfect 8-for-8 in the extra period. In addition to Oliver's charity tosses, Alex Harris and Glenn Turner each made both of their attempts. Santa Barbara also made its final three free throws of regulation to end the game with a streak of 11 in a row, and a modest final tally of 12-for-17, 70.6%.

Stop! Thief!
UCSB had 13 steals in the opener at San Diego State, equaling its season-high of last season. The Gauchos had seven of their nine players produce a steal, three had two or more and two, Josh Davis and Casey Cook, had four and three respectively. The four steals by Davis were a career-high, and the two steals by Cook tied the most that he has ever recorded in a single game.

The Opponents
UCSB and Wisconsin have never met. The Gauchos and the University of San Francisco have played 30 times in a series that dates back to 1961. The Dons hold an all-time 22-8 advantage over the Gauchos, but UCSB has won the last two meetings between the schools, winning 70-47 in Santa Barbara during the 2002-03 season 69-49 in San Francisco during the 2001-02 campaign.

The Gauchos On The Road
UCSB is 1-0 in road games this season. The overtime victory at San Diego State on Friday marked the second straight season in which the Gauchos have won their first road game of the season. Last season, Santa Barbara opened the season with a 57-51 win at Hawaii. In 2003-04, UCSB posted a 6-10 record in games away from the Thunderdome. The Gauchos were 5-6 in true road games during the 2003-04 season, and, in addition to the win at Hawaii, they posted a December win at UCLA.

The Best In Southern Cal
Just before the opening of practice in October, every NCAA Division I head coach in Southern California, actually all but one, attended the Los Angeles Athletic Club's annual tip-off banquet. At the event, all the coaches in attendance march up to the dais and say a few words about their program. It was at that event that one of the coaches, probably Bob Williams, mentioned that in 2003-04, UCSB had the best overall won-loss record of any NCAA Division I school in Southern California. Upon researching the bold assertion, it can now be stated that the statement was absolutely true. Among the 13 Division I programs from San Luis Obispo to San Diego, the Gauchos' modest 16-12 record was the best.

UCSB has inked two backcourt players to National Letters of Intent for the 2005-06 season. On Wednesday, Bob Williams announced the signing of 6-foot-3 guard James Powell, and 6-foot-1 guard Lance Hurdle. Powell is a combination guard from Glendora, Calif. He is entering his senior season at Glendora High School where, as a junior, he averaged 16.1 points, 4.5 rebounds, 4.8 assists and 2.7 steals per game. Powell also nailed 60 three-pointers. He was selected First Team All-CIF Division I and First Team All-Sierra League after leading Glendora to a 28-2 overall record and the second round of the CIF Playoffs. Hurdle, from La Mesa, Calif., is also a combination guard and he is entering his senior season at Helix High School. As a junior, Hurdle averaged 12.9 points, 5.8 rebounds, 3.2 steals and a San Diego County-leading 5.9 assists per game. He was a Second Team All-East County choice and a First Team All-Grossmont League selection after helping Helix to a 20-8 overall record. Hurdle also made 47.1% of his field goal attempts.

What's Cooking?
Senior forward Casey Cook was expected to be one of UCSB's workhorses in 2004-05, and that status has solidified as the rest of the frontcourt players have dropped like flies. In the season-opener at San Diego State, Cook started at the five spot and played a career-high 35 minutes before fouling out with just under a minute remaining in regulation. He finished with 15 points, tying the fifth-highest total of his career, and he had four rebounds, three assists and three steals. His steal and assist totals both equalled his career-highs in that category. Last season, Cook played in 25 games, making 18 starts, and he averaged 9.9 points and 4.6 rebounds per game. His 9.9 points per game average is the highest among Gaucho returnees and his rebounding total ranks second among returnees overall and first among returnees who are healthy. Last year in a similar situation, a tough season-opener on the road with the Gauchos missing two starters, Cook had similar results. In a season-opening 57-51 win at Hawaii in 2003-04, with the Gauchos missing their starting backcourt of Branduinn Fullove and Nick Jones, the 6-foot-8 native of Sacramento, Calif., had career-highs of 16 points and 12 rebounds. Although a leg injury caused him to miss three full games and limited him in a few others, Cook was one of UCSB's most consistent players during the 2003-04 season, and based on the two exhibition games and the one regular season game, that should be the case again this season.

Several years ago, when he played for the Pittsburgh Steelers, Kordell Stewart was given the nickname of slash. He was a quarterback/wide receiver/kick returner. Junior Josh Davis is UCSB's version of `Slash'. Davis is a guard/small forward/power forward. The 6-foot-5 Davis started at power forward in the game at San Diego State, and he responded with the best game of his career. Not only did he score a career-high 18 points, post a career-high four steals, and make a career-best 4-for-5 from beyond the three-point arc, but he also defended the heck out of one of the Aztecs key players, senior Chris Walton...the last of Bill Walton's sons. Already generally regarded as the Gauchos' best defensive player, David enhanced that image on Friday. In 29 minutes, Walton had no points, one rebound and four turnovers, missing all four of his shots. In addition, Davis played a career-high 38 minutes and he played the last 8:51 of regulation and the overtime period with four fouls. By all rights, health permitting, he will play primarily at the three spot as the season unfolds, but for now, he will play some at the two, the three and the four. As a sophomore, Davis averaged 4.5 points, 2.3 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game. He started 13 games, most at the very beginning and very end of the season, and he saw his role fluctuate from a primary offensive option to a secondary option. This year, he is expected to be a primary option, and that showed in game one.

Oliver's Twist
Junior point guard Chrismen Oliver began his career as a recruited walk-on in 2000-01. He redshirted his first year at Santa Barbara and in the win at San Diego State, he made his head coach happy that Oliver had redshirted that first season. On Friday, Oliver scored had a career-game. After never playing more than 24 minutes in any game during his first three seasons, Oliver played a team-high 41 minutes in the overtime win. In addition, he scored a career-high 17 points, including seven in the overtime period, and he had a career-high five rebounds to go along with four assists. Oliver also hit what was, arguably, the biggest shot of the game. After UCSB had blown a six-point lead in the final minute of regulation, capped by an Aztec buzzer-beating put-back, Oliver calmly drained the first basket of the overtime, a three-pointer, to give his team a lead it never gave back. A career 60.0% free throw shooter, he also made all four of his free throw attempts in the OT to help the Gauchos hold-off SDSU. UCSB entered the season with the thought of playing a sort of tag-team at the point guard spot. Oliver would start, but junior Joe See would split time. The rash of injuries that have pummelled the Gauchos in the early going, along with players shifting positions to cover for those injuries, seems to have put Oliver in a good position to win the point guard position all for himself, and at least one game into the year, he seems to be adapting to the role.

Harris Has Historic Debut In The Clutch
Guard Alex Harris had just one chance to set UCSB's record for points by a freshman in a season-opener. Thanks to the overtime, he seized the opportunity and, thanks to Harris, the Gauchos won the game. Harris scored 15 points in the win over San Diego State, the most ever by a UCSB freshman in his debut or in his season-opener. The Alameda, Calif., native had seven points entering the OT, but a pair of clutch three-pointers and a pair of free throws gave Harris eight of the team's 17 points in the overtime and 15 for the game. Previously the most points scored by a Gaucho freshman in a season-opener was the 14 points scored by Tim DePriest in a season-opening win over Bemidji State in 1983. Branduinn Fullove had 13 in the opener against Pepperdine in 2000-01, Mark Hull had 13 against Stanford in 1999-2000, Carlton Davenport tossed in 12 at Oklahoma in 1985 and Carrick DeHart had ten at Santa Clara in 1986, but no player had ever scored 15. In all, Harris made 5-of-8 shots from the field, including 2-of-4 from three-point range, in the win. He also had three rebounds, two assists and a steal. During the overtime period, Harris must have had flashbacks to the final game of his high school career when he scored 11 fourth-quarter points, including the game-winning three-pointer in the final minute, to lead his prep team, Notre Dame St. Joseph's, a win in the California Division V State Championship game last year.

Wait And See
Junior guard Joe See, expected to split time with Chrismen Oliver at the point, played primarily at the off-guard spot in the opener. Although he made two key shots in the second half, including an off-balance leaner on the baseline to beat the shot clock, See struggled with his shooting against San Diego State. The team's leader in three-point baskets last year with 44, See missed all seven of his attempts from behind the arc in the opener. Overall, he finished 2-of-10 and scored four points. In his career-high 36 minutes, however, See did have four rebounds, three assists, two steals and one of the Gauchos' three blocked shots. Slow starts are nothing new for See. Last year, he made just 4-of-16 from three-point range to open the season, but he finished the year by hitting 40 of his last 87, 46.0%. In his freshman season at Oregon State, See missed his first 12 three-point attempts, but finished the year by making 43 his last 112 attempts, 34.7%. The 43 three-point buckets were a freshman record at Oregon State.

A The World Turners
All things considered, sophomore forward Glenn Turner had a pretty solid season-opener. After suffering an ankle injury in early October and practicing just once during the first four weeks of practice, Turner was cleared to go full-time last week. On Friday, with just four full practices under his drawstring, he played 22 minutes, double his previous career-high of 11, finishing with four points, a career-high seven rebounds, five of which came in the second half and overtime, one blocked shot and a steal. Although Turner missed his only two field goal attempts, he was a perfect 4-for-4 from the free throw line, no modest feat for a player who was 3-for-13, 23.1%, during the 2003-04 campaign. In fact, taking things a step further, Turner made all four of his free throws in crunch time. Hitting a pair with 1:26 to go in regulation, and then two more with 0:27 to go in the overtime period. The only downside of Turner's performance was that when he missed his first field goal attempt, it snapped a streak of ten straight makes dating back to the 2003-04 season.

The Supporting Case
Junior guard Michael Chambers, a transfer from San Francisco, freshman forward Chris Moore and redshirt freshman swingman Derek Rasp each played a part in the season-opening win. After scoring 19 points in the final exhibition game against Westmont, Chambers struggled with his shooting at SDSU, scoring just two points on 1-of-6 from the field, but he had three rebounds in his ten minutes. Moore played eight minutes with two points, one rebounds, one steal and a block, but the his greatest contribution may have been standing his ground and taking a charge against the Aztecs' top player, Marcus Slaughter, late in the first half. Rasp, playing four minutes at the four spot despite being just 6-foot-5, scored three points, on 1-of-2 from three-point range, and had two rebounds in just four minutes.