Jan. 25, 2008
Saturday, January 26, 2008 at 4:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara Gauchos (11-6, 6-0) at Pacific Tigers (8-11, 3-3)
Alex G. Spanos Center (6,150)
For the Record
The UC Santa Barbara women's basketball team enters Saturday's meeting with Pacific with an overall record of 11-6 after defeating UC Davis 62-53 in overtime Thursday night in the Pavilion. The first place Gauchos improved to 6-0 in Big West play and have now won a season-best seven straight overall to climb to five games over the .500 mark at 11-6. The seven game winning streak is UCSB's longest such run since the Gauchos won 10 in a row towards the end of the 2004-05 campaign.
Gauchos on the Air & Web
Saturday's tilt with the Tigers, along with every other UCSB women's basketball game in 2007-08, will be broadcast live on KIST 1340 AM in Santa Barbara. Steve Wendt is in his fourth season as the play-by-play voice of the Gauchos and he will have the call live from the Spanos Center. Yours truly will try not to scare away listeners while handling the color commentary. If radio isn't your thing, you can watch all games live via the internet by going to www.bigwest.tv and purchasing the UCSB season package. For the third straight year the Big West Conference and CSTV are partnering to bring exclusive Big West Gaucho events to fans online. BigWest.TV offers on-demand access to LIVE coverage of Big West contests as well as press conferences, features, and Big West Championships.
UCSB Battles Through Poor Second Half, Defeats Davis In Overtime
After scoring just 15 second half points and giving up a 14-point lead, UCSB was able to weather the storm and outscored UC Davis 14-5 in overtime on the way to a 62-53 Big West victory Thursday night at the Pavilion. Jessica Wilson scored a season-high 20 points and hauled in a game-high 11 rebounds to lead the Gauchos to their sixth consecutive conference win. The Sacramento native was 7-of-12 from the field, including 2-of-5 from the three-point arc, and 4-of-4 at the free-throw line and scored nine of her points in overtime. After shooting 46.4% in the first 20 minutes and taking a 33-21 lead into the locker room at halftime, the Gauchos struggled against the Aggies' zone defense in the second half and saw Davis came roaring back to take a 47-44 lead with 5:31 on the clock. UCSB tied the game, 48-48 on a big offensive rebound and put back by Whitney Warren with 3:52 remaining and then locked down defensively, forcing Davis to miss its final five shots. After the Aggies came up dry on the final possession of regulation, the Gauchos took over in the extra session, scoring the first seven points on back-to-back baskets from Meagan Williams and a triple from Wilson. Santa Barbara pulled away for the 62-53 victory. UCSB shot a blistering 62.5% from the field in overtime, while limiting Davis to just 1-for-7 shooting, 14.3%.
Scouting the Tigers
UCSB will look to keep rolling Saturday with a stop at the University of the Pacific to wrap up its Northern California trip. The Gauchos and Tigers have squared off 56 times over the years and Santa Barbara has dominated the all-time series 42-14. UCSB swept two regular season meetings with UOP in 2006-07, routing the Tigers 89-55 Jan. 27 in the Thuderdome, before recording a 79-67 victory in Stockton on Mar. 1. Chisa Ononiwu was 6-of-8 from behind the three-point line and 9-of-14 overall on the way to a career-high 29 points in the first meeting last season.
Head coach Lynne Roberts is in her second season with the Tigers and brings back four starters and a total of eight letterwinners from last year's squad that finished the 2006-07 campaign with an overall record of 8-22 and placed eighth in the Big West standing at 2-12.
Pacific enters Saturday's match-up with an overall record of 8-11 and a 3-3 mark in the Big West after a thrilling 89-88 overtime win over Cal Poly Thursday night. Freshman Jennifer Fath scored a career-high 31 points on 11-for-15 shooting to lead the way. On the season, junior guard Janae Young leads four Tigers scoring in double figures averaging 11.9 points per game and ranks second on the squad hauling in 6.9 rebounds per night. Fellow junior Karen Dawkins is second scoring 11.4 points per game to go with 6.3 boards and a team-high 15 blocks. Andrea Swanson and Jake Kelly follow averaging 10.7 and 10.6 points per game, respectively. As a team Pacific shoots 41.7% from the field and 32.7% from behind the arc. The Tigers average 71.0 points per game, which leads the Big West, but they allow 73.1, a figure that ranks sixth. UOP is 5-5 at home this season.