UCSB Looks to Get Back to Winning Ways vs. Fullerton on Saturday

UCSB Looks to Get Back to Winning Ways vs. Fullerton on Saturday

• The Schedule
Saturday, January 7 2012,  at 3:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara at Cal State Fullerton (7-6, 1-1)
at Cal State Fullerton's Titan Gym (2,500)
Series record vs. the Titans – 46-27
Streak – Won 37
Last time out vs. the Titans – W, 73-70 (@ CSUF, 2/17/11)
Game broadcast on AM 990 KTMS and streaming online by clicking here

Thursday, January 12 2012,  at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara vs. UC Irvine (4-10, 0-2)
at UCSB's Thunderdome (6,000)
Series record vs. the Anteaters – 56-24
Streak – Won 10
Last time out vs. the Anteaters – W, 70-56 (@UCSB, 2/10/11)
Game broadcast on AM 990 KTMS and streaming online by clicking here

• On The Radio
All UC Santa Barbara basketball games are broadcast live in Santa Barbara on AM 990 KTMS and will stream live online by clicking here with the pregame show starting 30 minutes prior to tipoff.

• The Opponents
• Cal State Fullerton, 1/7
UCSB holds one of the nation's longest active winning streaks over Fullerton, having won 37 straight dating all the way back to 1995. Fullerton has won four of its past five games entering this week and is led by All-Big West First Team pick from a season ago, Megan Richardson, who is averaging 17.8 points per game, which is second in the conference. She is the only Titans player averaging double figures in scoring.
• UC Irvine, 1/12
UCSB has a 10-game winning streak over the Anteaters, dating back to 2006. UCI is led by Kassandra MaCalister's 10.7 points per game and the team has three players ranked in the top-10 in the conference in shooting percentage. Irvine, which dropped its first two conference games to  CSUN and Long Beach State, is coached by Molly Goodenbour, now in her fourth season.

• We're Going Streaking!
UC Santa Barbara's next two opponents are two foes that UCSB has had its most success against. The Gauchos have defeated Cal State Fullerton 37 consecutive times, ranking as the fifth-best streak against conference opponents in the nation. Santa Barbara has beaten UC Irvine a total of 56 times, which is the most of any opponent in UCSB history.

• Tenacious D
UC Santa Barbara is continuing its defensive dominance this season, holding opponents to just 50.7 points per game, best in the Big West and ranking the squad 16th in the nation. The Gauchos are also allowing opponents to shoot just 37.2% from the floor, which is the tied for the best mark in the conference. The next closest Big West team in points allowed is Cal State Fullerton (62.6 points per game, a -11.9 differential).

• UCSB or UCS-D?
The above note shouldn't be a surprise because last year UCSB led the conference in field goal percentage defense (18th in the nation) at 35.5%. In 2009-10, UCSB allowed opponents to shoot 36.3%, which was 31st in the nation, and in 2008-09, the Gauchos allowed opponents to hit 34.6% of their shots, ranking eighth in the country.

• Under 50 is Nifty
In seven of the past nine games, UCSB has not allowed its opponents to reach the 50-point plateau, the first time in school history that has happened. The Gauchos are allowing just 47.9 points per game in that stretch. The team stands 4-5 in those games despite allowing just two opponents to make at least 20 field goals in any of those games. In that same nine-game stretch the Gauchos are averaging 50.9 points per game.

• Stingy for Six
When UCSB held six straight opponents under 50 points from Nov. 19 to Dec. 16, it marked the longest such streak in program history.

• Conference Lid-Lifters
Saturday's loss to Cal Poly marked just the second Big West Conference-opening defeat in the past 17 seasons by a Gaucho team. The other one came during a 70-57 defeat at UC Riverside on Dec. 28, 2006.

• Under .500? No Problem
At 5-6 overall, when it opened conference play, the Gauchos were in familiar territory. UCSB has had just two seasons – last year and 2003-04 – in which it has opened conference action with a .500 record or better. UCSB has won 14 of the past 16 Big West regular-season titles.

• Top Twenty Time
With nine points in the game against Cal Poly – including a game-tying three-pointer with 7.2 seconds left – Emilie Johnson moved into the top-20 in the school's all-time scoring book with 1,159 career points. Johnson surpassed Jess Hansen (1999-2003) and Jessica Wilson (2004-08) in the game and now stands 18th all-time. Next up for the senior from Loomis, Calif. is Kira Anthofer, who scored 1,214 career points from 1984-89. Johnson has 11 20-point games in her UCSB career.

• Biggest in the Big West
The Gauchos have dominated the conference for nearly two decades. Since the 1995-96 season, UCSB is 226-32 (.883) in Big West games.

• Z is First
After scoring a team-high 16 points vs. Cal Poly (just one off her career high), sophomore guard Melissa Zornig is now averaging 12.5 points per game over the past six games – which leads the team during that stretch. The sophomore guard is averaging 8.5 points per game on the season, ranking her third on the team and her 16 3-pointers are second on the team.

• Turning Things Around
In an odd twist, UCSB is averaging 17.0 turnovers in each of its wins and 12.3 in its losses. As a team the Gauchos turn the ball over just 14.25 times per game, ranking them 20th in the nation. It's a far cry from just two seasons ago when the Gauchos committed 649 total turnovers (20.3 per game) in the 2009-10 season, the eighth-highest mark in program history.

• Hang Ten
With Sweets Underwood and Nicole Nesbit as the Gauchos' two leading scorers at 9.1 and 8.6 points per game, respectively, the team does not have a scorer averaging 10.0 or more points per game. Only once in UCSB program history has a team not had at least one player average double digits. That came in 1982-83 when Thyra Ladyman led the way with 9.7 points per game, a team that averaged 61.7 points per game.

• Score-Bored
While the Gauchos are at the bottom of the Big West's scoring average – just 52.1 points per game – and rank 316 out of 336 teams ranked nationally in that category, they still are not on pace to set a school record. The lowest points per game a UCSB team scored was 45.2 in the 1973-74 season.

• How Sweets It Is!
Junior forward Sweets Underwood hit the game-winning basket with 0.4 seconds left in the win over UTEP, her first buzzer-beater in her career.  The Compton, Calif. native is averaging a team-high 9.5 points per game and her 8.1 rebounds per game rank her fifth in the Big West. She  is shooting 47.7% from the floor, which is sixth among conference players.

• Kelsey - It Rhymes With Three
Senior guard Kelsey Adrian has been doing a lot of her damage from beyond the arc.  Adrian is shooting 44.2% from three-point range, which leads both the team and the Big West. Adrian averages the fifth-most three-pointers made in the conference with 1.58 per game. The Langley, B.C. native is just nine three-pointers shy of breaking into UCSB's top-10 in career treys after just 42 games as a Gaucho.

• Board Games
Santa Barbara's two frontcourt stalwarts – Kirsten Tilleman and Sweets Underwood – are two of the best rebounders in relation to their Big West peers. Tilleman ranks third in the conference with 8.3 rebounds per game and Underwood is sixth at 7.9. There has been just one game this season where one of the two didn't grab at least seven rebounds.

• On The Line
When it comes to free throw shooting, the Gauchos are third in the Big West with a 73.3% clip from the charity stripe, which is 51st in the country. However, getting to the foul line is a completely different story. UCSB has only attempted 120 total free throws this season – an average of just 10.0 per game – ranking them last in the conference. Every other Big West school has taken at least 192 free throws this year.

• Probable Starters - Quick Fact
F     1    Sweets Underwood - Team's leading scorer at 9.1 points per game
F    2    Kelsey Adrian - Has hit at least one 3-pointer in all but one game this year
G    10    Emilie Johnson - Has not reached double figures in eight straight games
G     22    Melissa Zornig - Has scored at least eight points in each of last six games
F/C    32    Kirsten Tilleman - Her 52.9% from the floor is best on team (min. 10 shots)

• Probable Reserves - Quick Fact
G     3    Nicole Nesbit - Averaging 9.0 points per game in games she comes off the bench
G    5    Madeline Campbell - 7 minutes at Cal Poly was most since 11/23 game
F    15    Adaeze Okolie - Injury has kept her sidelined thus far
F    21    Jackie Luna-Castro - Is second on the team with 3 blocked shots
G    24  Angelei Aguirre - Has made 5 of her 7 FG attempts
G    33    Destini Mason - Career-high 11 points in loss to Cal Poly