UCSB Falls Short to Nevada 77-66

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – Nevada's second half scoring frenzy outpaced UC Santa Barbara in the 77-66 decision on Saturday afternoon in the Thunderdome.

UCSB's losing streak is now at four games, while it's overallr ecord stands at 4-7. Nevada moves to 5-6.

Nicole Nesbit led the Gaucho scoring effort with 15 points, while Melissa Zornig and Destini Mason followed their fellow senior with 14 and 13, respectively.

Zornig also picked up a team-high five assists and grabbed five rebounds.

For the second consecutive game, Kendra Morrison led the Gauchos in the rebound category with seven boards. Mason and Jasmine Ware both were second on the team with six each. 

In her season debut, Clair Watkins played 16 minutes and picked up three points, two rebounds, and a pair of steals.

The Gauchos kept the matchup competitive in the first half and were not behind by more than a single possession through the first 17 minutes.

With 2:27 remaining in the first, Nevada stormed out to its largest lead to that point with a 27-20 edge.

Santa Barbara, though, answered back with an 8-4 run to close the half. Nesbit started it off with a layup after brining the ball across the court herself.

In the following Gaucho possession, Nesbit created a three-point play when she kicked the ball out to a wide open Mason who drained her long range shot from the right wing.

After a Wolf Pack layup, the Gauchos were down 31-25 with 22 seconds winding down in the half. UCSB made its last possession count when Zornig found an open Morrison who buried the deep corner look for three.

The Gauchos continued with that same momentum as they opened the second half with five unanswered points.

Nesbit knocked down a jumper to trigger the run in the team's first offensive take after Onome Jemerigbe picked up a defensive rebound.

UCSB recaptured the lead just moment later when Zornig picked up a steal in the Nevada backcourt and found Jemerigbe sprinting into the key.

The freshman got the pass and split two defenders enroute to a three-point play. After her free throw, Jemerigbe put the Gauchos back up by two points, 33-31.  

The Wolf Pack then responded with 46 points to complete the game. They were led by Danika Sharp who netted a game-high 23 points, 17 of which were scored in the second half.

UCSB will take a brief break for the Christmas holiday and will return to game action on Dec. 28 to host Seattle University. Tickets are available in the Ticketing Office, on the phone at 805.893.UCSB (8272), or online here. The game will also be featured locally on AM 1290 and around the world online at UCSBGauchos.com