December 2, 2011

UCSB Scores Early, Often in Complete Win Over USF

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – The UC Santa Barbara women's basketball team had enjoyed some good wins earlier this season but Friday night in the Thunderdome, the Gauchos may have played their most complete game yet.

Coming off two subpar games vs. Washington and Northern Colorado, UCSB started out on a quick run and didn't take its foot off the gas pedal, pummeling the University of San Francisco, 60-41.

Five Gauchos (3-4 overall) enjoyed double figures of one kind or another as Melissa Zornig tied a career high with 17 points and Kirsten Tilleman set a career high with 16 rebounds.

Zornig buried five three-pointers, breaking a shooting slump that seemed to affect the whole squad. UCSB shot less than 30 percent in both of its previous two defeats, but tremendous defense kept the Gauchos in each game.

The defense continued its part, holding the Dons (1-8) to just 26.4 percent shooting from the floor and the Gauchos outrebounded USF 45-33. Sweets Underwood pulled down 12 boards for UCSB, her fourth double-digit rebounding performance this season.

While Santa Barbara didn't shoot the lights out from the field – just 39.0 percent overall – the team nailed 47.4 percent of its three-point attempts hitting on 9 of 19 shots from downtown. Kelsey Adrian kept up her marksmanship with a pair of threes and Emilie Johnson also canned two treys for UCSB.

Adrian finished with 10 points, her third straight game in double-digits, while Nicole Nesbit added 11 off the bench, including three rebounds and two assists.

Tilleman was "a warrior," according to UCSB head coach Carlene Mitchell as she had 11 of her boards on the defensive end and added three blocked shots and two assists. She had five points on the night.

Santa Barbara led by 11 points at three various spots in the first half and took a 29-21 lead into the locker room and then pulled away from USF in the second half.

The Gauchos used a 21-4 run midway through the second stanza to put the game out of reach.

During the run Zornig canned a trey, Tilleman had a layup, Johnson nailed another three and Underwood had a pair of layups. That was all UCSB needed to send the Dons to their seventh straight defeat.

UCSB returns to the friendly confines of the Thunderdome on Saturday, Dec. 10 with a 4 p.m. tip-off vs. UNLV. Tickets are available by calling 893-UCSB or clicking here. Fans can listen to the game live online by clicking here.

                                                                                            
   

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