Gauchos Begin 5-Game Road Trip on Tuesday at Bakersfield

Gauchos Begin 5-Game Road Trip on Tuesday at Bakersfield

Dec. 13, 2010

• The Schedule
Tuesday, December 14, 2010 at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara at Cal State Bakersfield (7-5)
at CSUB's Icardo Center (3,800)
Series record vs. the Roadrunners - 3-1
Streak - Won 2
Last time out vs. the Roadrunners - W, 80-75 @ CSUB (3/6/10)
Game broadcast live on AM 990 KTMS and streaming online by clicking here

Saturday, December 18, 2010 at 12:00 p.m.
St. John's-Chartwells Holiday Classic
UC Santa Barbara vs. Fresno State (7-3)
at St. John's Carnesseca Arena (6,008)
Series record vs. the Bulldogs - 8-20
Streak - Lost 3
Last time out vs. the Bulldogs - L, 84-76 vs. FSU (11/13/09)
Game broadcast streaming live online by clicking here and tape delayed at 7 p.m. on AM 990 KTMS

Sunday, December 19, 2010, TBA
St. John's-Chartwells Holiday Classic
UC Santa Barbara vs. St. John's/Southern Mississippi winner
at St. John's Carnesseca Arena (6,008)
Game broadcast streaming live online by clicking here and tape delayed at 7 p.m. on AM 990 KTMS

• 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
. Josh Suchon is the voice of the Gauchos, performing the play-by-play, while former Los Angeles Lakers and UCSB star Don Ford will handle the color commentary. On select road games, much to the chagrin of the listening audience, yours truly, Matt Hurst, will provide color commentary.

• Winning Big
The Gauchos have enjoyed a 51-point margin of victory in their past two games, which ties the team for the largest two-game margin of victory in Lindsay Gottlieb's tenure as head coach. The last time it happened wasn't long ago - when UCSB beat Pacific 82-54 and Long Beach State 73-50 on consecutive days of the Big West Tournament last March.

• Tenacious D
In each of the past two seasons, UCSB has led the Big West in opponent's field goal percentage and are doing it again this year. UCSB is allowing teams to shoot 34.7% from the floor. The Gauchos rank 38th in the nation in field goal percentage defense and in their victories this season the team has held its opponents to shooting percentages of 24.1%, 20.8% and 34.5%. Last season the squad ranked 31st in the nation with its 36.3%. In 2008-09 UCSB ranked eighth in the country with a 34.6% clip.

• Back on Track
In her past two games, Emilie Johnson has scored 18 points apiece, marking the most points she's scored in consecutive contests since pouring in 48 points in February of last year. Prior to her 18-point effort at USF, Johnson was shooting just 17.6 percent (9 of 51) in her previous four games, but in her last two games the junior from Loomis, Calif. is 14-for-31, for a 45.2 percent clip. Johnson leads the team with 11.6 points per game.

• Five Alive!
Junior guard Kelsey Adrian has reached double figures in scoring in each of her past five games, averaging 12.6 points per game in that stretch. Adrian has hit double digits in six of eight games and is second on the team with her 11.3 points per game this year. Despite that, the Langley, B.C. native has led the team in scoring in only two games this season.

• Swat Team
UCSB is averaging 5.1 blocks per game this season, which is the best in the Big West and 31st in the nation. Mekia Valentine is averaging 4.5 blocks per game, which is third in the country. Over her past four games, however, Valentine is averaging 5.8 blocked shots per contest. Last season UCSB was sixth in the nation with an average of 6.3 swats per game.

• Sweets Tooth
Sophomore forward Sweets Underwood is third on the team with her 10.6 points per game this season and is second on the squad with 7.9 rebounds per game (which is third in the Big West). Underwood has done all of that despite averaging just 22.5 minutes per game this season. The Compton, Calif. native is shooting 62.7 percent from the floor, which ranks her first amongst all Big West players and she's hitting on 72.4 percent of her free throws. Underwood has scored at least six points in every game this season and is averaging 11.7 points per game over her past six contests.

• Double Down
Mekia Valentine is pulling down 9.0 rebounds per game this season, ranking her second among Big West players. The senior is also 10.3 points per game this season, leaving open the possibility that she will average a double-double in her final season. If the Greensboro, N.C. native should pull that off, she would be the first Gaucho to average a double-double since Erika Kienast had 15.9 points and 10.6 rebounds per game in 1991-92.

• More Double-Double Info ...
Valentine has turned in three double-double efforts so far this year after she posted 12 double-doubles last season. That number was the most by any Gaucho since Kristen Mann had 14 in 2004-05.

• All About Angelei
Sophomore transfer Angelei Aguirre has been making marks as a Gaucho, mainly for her generosity. Aguirre is second on the team with 25 total assists (3.13 per game, seventh among Big West players). Her assists-to-turnover ratio of 1.67 is third-best in the conference. Aguirre, the daughter of former NBA star Mark Aguirre, is averaging 4.2 assists per game over her last six contests.

• Shooter McGavin
Emilie Johnson is already in fourth place all-time in career three-pointers made with 118 all-time. Next for Johnson to leapfrog is Jess Hansen (1999-2003), who hit 215 in her career. Johnson has attempted 368 career treys, ranking her fourth all-time at UCSB, 129 shy of tying Hansen for third all-time.

• Put the Biscuit Where?
Through the first four games this season the Gauchos are shooting 38.7 percent from the floor, ranking the team sixth in the Big West and 184th in the nation. Obviously it's early, but right now that would be in the school's top-10 for lowest shooting percentage in a season. The No. 10 lowest shooting percentage was 39.4 percent in 1983-84.

• Baby, It's Cold Outside
The Gauchos' shooting woes are not limited inside the line - in fact beyond the three-point line UCSB is among one of the poorest shooting teams in the country. Santa Barbara is hitting just 23.3 percent of its bonus bombs, placing the team 267th out of 270 ranked teams in the nation. The lowest three-point percentage by a Gaucho team was in 2005-06 when UCSB hit just 26.2 percent of its treys. Last season UCSB connected on only 28.3 percent of its bonus bombs, the sixth-lowest mark in school history.

• More Shooting Facts
Take away the Gauchos' shooting percentage from downtown and UCSB is hitting 45.5 percent of its two-point field goals, a much more palatable percentage.

• Destini's Destiny
Prior to last Friday night at St. Mary's Destini Mason had played just 10 minutes in her Gaucho career. But, over her past three games she has seen 32 minutes of court time and has totaled 14 points, five rebounds, four assists and two steals.

• Fresh Faces
Two freshmen have seen plenty of court time so far this season - Nicole Nesbit and Melissa Zornig - with each playing in every game this season. Zornig, who hails from Coto de Caza, Calif., is averaging 22.0 minutes per game to go with 5.0 points and 2.3 rebounds per game. Nesbit, who is from Northridge, Calif., is averaging 16.3 minutes per contest to go with 3.1 points, 1.8 assists and 1.8 rebounds per game.

• Not Quite "Free" Throws
After opening the season by making 19 of 22 free throws, UCSB hasn't been as effective from the charity stripe. Santa Barbara has made just 59.5 percent of its foul shots (69-for-116) in its past six games. The Gauchos are shooting 63.8 percent from the line, ranking them fifth among Big West squads. Two seasons ago, in 2008-09, UCSB set a school record with its 75.7 percent free throw percentage. That on-the-mark clip was also the 13th best in the nation that season.

• Speaking of Free Throws ...
After starting the season just 1 of 5 from the charity stripe, Emilie Johnson has made 7 of her past 8 foul shots and is shooting 64.3 percent from the line. That number should only improve as the season moves on. After all, Johnson entered her junior campaign holding two of UCSB's top-five single-season free throw percentage marks. Johnson hit 84.3 percent of her freebies last season, ranking her fifth in school annals. In her freshman season of 2008-09, Johnson nailed 94.3 percent of her charity stripe shots. Johnson's 87.1 career free throw percentage entering this season currently leads everyone who has ever put on a Gaucho uniform.

The Lindsay Gottlieb File
Lindsay Gottlieb is in her third season as the Gauchos' head coach, and she is just the fourth head coach in UCSB women's basketball history. Last season Gottlieb guided the Gauchos to wins in seven of the squad's last eight games, taking a team that finished 9-7 in the Big West to the conference tournament's semifinals, keeping alive a streak of 20 years that UCSB had finished Big West play with a record above .500. In her first season at the helm, Gottlieb led the team to a 22-10 overall mark (15-1 in the Big West) and the Big West regular-season and tournament championships. Named the Big West Coach of the Year, Gottlieb became the first coach in Gaucho history to win at least 20 games and the Coach of the Year award in her first season - and one of only seven coaches nationwide to do so. Gottlieb led the Gauchos to their 14th consecutive postseason appearance and the team won 20 games for the 12th time in the past 14 years. In her first two seasons with the program, Gottlieb has guided the Gauchos to national prominence, leading the conference in field goal percentage defense both years while having her team set a school record in free throw percentage (08-09) and blocked shots in a season (09-10).. No stranger to success, Gottlieb was formerly the associate head coach at Cal, helping the team to a 68-28 (.708) overall mark in her time there. Prior to that, Gottlieb was an assistant at the University of Richmond, where she helped the Spiders to three straight 20-win seasons.

The Gaucho Fund, launched as part of the Dare to Be Great strategic plan, is UCSB Athletics' annual giving program to provide vital funding support for scholarships, academic success and leadership development for Gaucho student-athletes. The Gaucho Fund is the anchor to the Dare to Be Great campaign.

GKids is the official kids club of UCSB Athletics. Members receive a free GKids t-shirt, free admittance to tons of Gaucho games, opportunities to be ball boys and girls at games, a special birthday greeting from Olie (the GKids mascot) and much, much more! For more information on GKids, or to become a member, please click here.