Nov. 19, 2005
Game 2 Sunday, Nov. 20, 2005 9:00 a.m. PST Louisville, KY
UC Santa Barbara at Louisville Freedom Hall (18,865)
Gauchos Play Second of Three Straight Games Against 2005 NCAA Tourney Teams
Just 38 hours after suffering its first season-opening loss in more than a decade, the UC Santa Barbara women's basketball team looks to regroup for a Sunday, Nov. 20 game at Louisville, making its 2005-06 debut. The Gaucho-Cardinal showdown is slated for a 12:00 p.m. EST/9:00 a.m. PST tip-off in Freedom Hall. UofL will the second of three straight UCSB opponents that advanced to the 2005 NCAA Tournament. Santa Barbara is looking to avoid back-to-back losses to open a season for the first time since 1993-94, when it stumbled to an 0-3 start.
Gauchos on the Air and Web
Sunday's UCSB-UofL contest will air live in Santa Barbara on KIST 1340AM with "Showtime" Steve Wendt handling play-by-play duties and Ben Alkaly attempting color commentary. The radio broadcast begins 15 minutes prior to tip-off with the "Gaucho Pregame Show". All of Santa Barbara's games in 2005-06 can also be heard live via the internet by pointing your browser to www.ucsbgauchos.com and purchasing the "UCSB All-Access Pass". Finally, live "Gametracker" scoring from Freedom Hall is available through UCSB's official athletic site as well.
Gauchos Dig Early Hole and Fall 86-55 at 10th-Ranked Michigan State
UCSB stumbled out of the gate in its season opener Friday night and could not recover against the nation's 10th-ranked team, falling 86-55 to Michigan State in the Breslin Center. The Spartans - who advanced all the way to the NCAA Championship game in 2005 - raced out to a 27-4 lead over the first eight minutes thanks in large part to the efficient shooting of Renee Haynes and All-American forward Liz Shimek. However the Gauchos staged a brief rally, closing the opening half on a 12-0 run that included a trio of three-pointers, pulling within 42-30 at intermission. Leading by only 11 points with 15 minutes to play, MSU erased any hopes of a Santa Barbara comeback with a dominating 16-2 run. While the defending Big Ten Champions owned an advantage in virtually every statistical category, UCSB's 16 turnovers were three-fewer than Michigan State's.
UCSB Three-Dot Data...
The Gauchos' first season-opening loss in 12 years was also its most lopsided defeat since a 107-74 setback at Arizona on Nov. 23, 1997...All 10 Santa Barbara players in uniform logged at least two minutes of action vs. MSU...In her first action in nearly a year due to an MCL tear, redshirt sophomore center Jenna Green led all Gauchos with 17 points, two-shy of her career high...Junior guard Erin O'Bryan launched 14 three-pointers at Michigan State, one short of the single-game school record set by Erin Alexander on Feb. 4, 1996...O'Bryan finished with 16 points Friday, the second-best effort of her career...LaShay Fears became the first UCSB freshman to start a season opener at point guard since Stacy Cinesmith in 1996-97...At Louisville, the Gauchos will regain the services of sophomore guard Jessica Wilson, forced to miss the opener due to a one-game NCAA suspension for playing in a scrimmage vs. Westmont College before her eligibility had been certified by UCSB administrators.
Louisville, in its first season as a member of the Big East Conference, played its only exhibition contest on Monday, Nov. 14, cruising past the Hoosier Lady Stars 85-55. Junior center Jazz Covington scored 15 points in that contest and is looking to build on her 2004-05 campaign when she was named First Team All-Conference USA and an honorable mention Associated Press All-American. Last season the Cardinals posted a 22-9 overall record and reached the first round of the Big Dance under head coach Tom Collen, who had UCSB assistant Carter Shaw on his staff from 2000-02 while at Colorado State. In their only prior meeting, the Gauchos topped UofL 78-67 ton Nov. 17, 2001 at the season-opening season at the Time Warner Cable Classic in Lincoln, Neb. Like UCSB, Louisville is currently receiving votes in the AP Top-25 Poll, and is also mentioned in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' rankings.