Big West Champion UCSB Plays Regular Season Finale on Saturday

March 6, 2009

• The Schedule
Saturday, March 7, 2009 at 5:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara (19-9, 14-1) vs. Long Beach State (8-20, 4-11) at Long Beach State's Walter Pyramid (4,200)
Game broadcast on KTMS 990-AM
Game available to watch on bigwest.tv
Game available on Gametracker

• On The Radio
All UC Santa Barbara basketball games are broadcast live in Santa Barbara on KTMS, 990. Steve Wendt is in his fifth year as the play-by-play voice of the Gauchos. Former Los Angeles Lakers and UCSB star Don Ford handles the color commentary for the majority of men's and women's games, but when Ford is not available at home games, former UCSB assistant coach Kristen Koch will fill in. When Ford is not available for road games, Matt Hurst, yours truly, will handle the task.

• Beating `The Beach'
The Gauchos hold a 40-38 all-time mark against Long Beach State, the school's fourth-most wins vs. any opponent in history. The Gauchos beat the 49ers 66-48 on Jan. 2 this year as Lauren Pedersen had 16 points and Sha'Rae Gibbons added 14. UCSB swept the 49ers last year, winning 72-69 in the Thunderdome and 70-62 in Long Beach. UCSB has not lost to the 49ers since Jan. 7, 2006.

• Conference Champs
By defeating UC Riverside 65-59 on Thursday, UCSB clinched the Big West regular-season title and the No. 1 seed in next week's conference tournament, meaning the team will not play until Friday after receiving two byes. The winner of the Big West Tournament receives an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. UCSB has won 10 of the past 12 Big West Tournaments, including last year.

• Pedersen's Points
Lauren Pedersen scored a career-high 28 points on Thursday, surpassing her previous mark of 27, done earlier this season vs. San Diego. Pedersen could become the first player in UCSB history to lead the Gauchos in total points, total rebounds, assists and steals in a season. Should Jenna Green (whom she's tied with for total rebounds) lead the Gauchos in rebounding, Pedersen would be the first player since Iesha Smith in 1993-94 to lead UCSB in points, assists and steals in a season.

• Shooting for 20
UCSB is on the verge of securing another 20-win season. The Gauchos have won at least 20 games in 11 of their past 13 seasons. Should UCSB notch its 20th win this season, it would mark the first consecutive 20-win seasons since 2003-04 to 2004-05.

• Exclusive Company
Jenna Green became only the ninth Gaucho in history to break the 1,500-point barrier when she scored 14 points vs. UC Riverside on Thursday. Green is currently ninth on UCSB's all-time scoring list and needs 12 points to surpass Barb Beainy (1988-92) for eighth place and 36 to top Patty Franklin (1978-82) for seventh place.

• Cinco Pack
Opponents are shooting just 34.3% against UCSB on the season, ranking the Gauchos fifth in the nation in field goal percentage defense. Xavier's 32.6% mark is first in the country. The Gauchos' 54.6 points against is 22nd in the nation.

• Sharp Shooter
Margaret Johnson leads the Gauchos with a 54.5% shooting percentage from the field. Should she finish the season near that mark, it would be the highest since Autumn Nichols finished the 2004-05 season with a 54.7% mark.

• Swat Team
As a team the Gauchos have blocked 119 shots this season putting them fourth all-time in school single-season history. The 2003-04 team's 140 blocks is first.

• Top 10 Time
Lauren Pedersen's 148 three-point attempts rank her fifth all-time in UCSB single-season history and the senior needs to hit just two more three-pointers to crack the top-10 for most makes in a season. Pedersen can move into the UCSB career top-10 in three-pointers attempted if she attempts 18 more.

• 20/20
Jenna Green and Lauren Pedersen are the only two Gaucho players to score 20 points in a game this season, with each player doing it three times apiece. Last season Jessica Wilson and Sha'Rae Gibbons were the only players to reach 20 or more points at least twice. Wilson did it five times and Gibbons did it two times.

• Biggest in the Big West
Since the 1995-96 season, UCSB is 202-19 (.914) in Big West games.

• Stealing Away
Lauren Pedersen has tallied 68 steals this season, averaging 2.4 per game, which ranks 59th in the country and first in the Big West. She is 11 steals away from cracking UCSB's single-season top-10 list for most steals in a season. Currently tied for that spot are Erika Kienast (who did it in the 1991-92 season) and Cori Close (1992-93).

• On the Rebound
Jenna Green leads the team with 5.6 rebounds per game. Should Green's current mark lead the Gauchos, it would tie as the lowest team-leading rebounding average in a single-season. Only one other time in UCSB history did a player finish with a rebounding average below six - 1984-85 when Rebecca Rehder had 5.6 per game.

• Charity Work
Lauren Pedersen ranks first in the Big West in overall free throw percentage. Pedersen is shooting 86.8% from the charity stripe which ranks 17th in the nation. Pedersen is on pace to set the school record, currently held by Erin Alexander, whose 85.5% in 1993-94 is UCSB's best. The team's 75.2% mark ranks 13th in the nation and the team is on pace to set a school record. Currently, the 2002-03 squad's ranks first at 73.9%.

• Block Party
Jenna Green has blocked 53 shots this season, which is tops in the Big West, and sixth all-time in UCSB's single-season history. Green's 2.0 average per game leads the Big West and is 44th in the country. Her 177 career blocks are just three shy of second-place in UCSB history behind Kris Grazzini (1992-96).

• Double Vision
Jenna Green has recorded five double-doubles this season, tying her career-best for a single year. The senior from San Jose also recorded five double-doubles in the 2006-07 season.

• Who Does No. 2 Work For?
UCSB is allowing just 54.6 points per game, which would be second all-time in UCSB history, behind the 43.6 points per game the 1973-74 team allowed. Currently, the 2003-04 squad's 56.8 points allowed per game is second.

• The Gaucho Way
As a championship-caliber program, UCSB Athletics recognizes the responsibility that goes with it. This simply means all student-athletes, staff, and fans will behave with a champion's approach, creating a safe environment at games and events. All of those who attend, compete, or work at Gaucho events are caretakers of the passionate, exciting, and great experience UCSB is known for. This is "The Gaucho Way."

• BE Great
UCSB Athletics is proud to promote the celebration of Black History Month as part of one of two recently created programs aimed at providing an outstanding all-around experience for Gaucho student-athletes and to reach out to the campus and Santa Barbara community. The promotion of black history falls under the "BE Great" life skills program, which was recently unveiled by Director of Athletics Mark Massari and Executive Associate Athletics Director Diane O'Brien.