UCSB Looks to Continue Winning Ways As Big West Conference Play Begins

UCSB Looks to Continue Winning Ways As Big West Conference Play Begins

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The Schedule
Thursday, Jan. 4, 2018 at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara (3-9) vs. Long Beach State (2-12)
The Thunderdome - Santa Barbara, Calif. 
All-Time Record vs. the 49ers: 50-29
Last Meeting: Mar. 11, 2017 - LBSU def. UCSB, 56-55 (BWT Championship)
2017 Series: LBSU 2-1
Video / Audio / Live Stats

Saturday, Jan. 7, 2018 at 2:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara (3-9) vs. Cal Poly (6-6)
The Thunderdome - Santa Barbara, Calif. 
All-Time Record vs. the Mustangs: 53-27
Last Meeting: Mar. 4, 2017 - UCSB def. CP, 77-63
2017 Series: Split 1-1
Video / Audio / Live Stats

Ticket Information
Season tickets and individual game tickets are available online here or by calling the UCSB Athletics Ticket Office at 805-893-UCSB (8272).

Video Stream Available
UCSBGauchos.com will offer a live video broadcast of all UCSB women's basketball home games. Gerry Fall, Voice of the Gauchos, will be on hand for play-by-play duty while Don Ford will provide color commentary. A link to the broadcast can be found on the UCSB women's basketball schedule page or by clicking here.

UCSB Ends Non-Conference Play on High Note
The UC Santa Barbara women's basketball team was firing on all cylinders on Friday afternoon, and came away with a 77-47 rout over New Mexico State in its final non-conference matchup. The Gauchos put up an impressive 50 points in the first half alone, and knocked down 14 three-pointers in the game, just one shy of a program record. UCSB enjoyed a 23-0 run that stretched from the second quarter to the third quarter while NMSU went 0-for-16 from the field and was held scoreless for over 11 minutes. Every Gaucho that played scored a point and grabbed a rebound while seven of the 11 recorded an assist. Sarah Porter led UCSB with 17 points while Sarah Bates and Drew Edelman also notched double-figures with 11 and 10 points, respectively. Natalia Bruening pulled down a career-high 12 rebounds in 18 minutes. 

Lucky Number 77
The Gauchos have scored 77 points in back-to-back games, both wins, and have won all three games when they have scored 77 points or more. Their other victory on the year was a 96-point outburst in the season opener against NAU. 

Big West Begins
UCSB kicks off Big West Conference action this week against Long Beach State and Cal Poly at home. 2017 regular season champion and Big West Preseason Poll No. 1 UC Davis is living up to the hype thus far with a 10-3 record while preseason No. 8 UC Irvine went 8-6 in non-conference action, the second best record among Big West programs. Overall, the Gauchos have fared much better in Big West action over the past two seasons, compiling a 17-15 record, compared to a 13-30 non-conference record. 

A Look at Long Beach State
UCSB welcomes Long Beach State to the Thunderdome on Thursday night, in a rematch of last season's Big West Tournament Championship game. The 49ers edged the Gauchos 56-55 in the tournament final to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament and UCSB will be looking for redemption on Thursday. The Gauchos split their regular season matchups with LBSU last season, winning 65-60 at home, before falling 59-45 on the road. This year, the 49ers are 2-12 with wins against Arizona and Grand Canyon. They have currently lost five straight and are coming off a 69-59 loss to VCU. Long Beach is led by freshman guard Shanaijah Davison, who is currently averaging 11.9 points per game. 6-foot-5 freshman center Emma Merriweather is averaging 9.2 points to go with 5.7 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game. 

Cal Poly Preview
The Gauchos will gear up for the Blue-Green Rivalry when they play host to Cal Poly this Saturday in the Thunderdome. UCSB holds a 53-27 advantage in the all-time series, and last season the two teams split its regular season matchups. The Gauchos lost 78-67 on the road to the Mustangs before winning 77-63 at home. This year, Cal Poly is an even 6-6, with a loss to St. Mary's and a win over NAU just like the Gauchos. The Mustangs are coming off a two-point win over CSU Bakersfield and open Big West play against UC Riverside on Thursday.  Senior guards Dynn and Lynn Leaupepe lead the Mustangs, scoring 15.7 and 14.1 points per game, respectively.

Home Sweet 'Dome
The Gauchos have fared much better at home under head coach Bonnie Henrickson in the past two seasons, combining for a 16-11 record while going just 7-23 on the road. In conference play, UCSB is even better at the Thunderdome, compiling an 11-5 record against the Big West while going just 6-10 in road games.   

Bombs Away
After coming just one three-pointer shy of tying a program record against New Mexico State, UCSB leaped from 47th in the nation to 37th with an average of 8.5 made three-point field goals per game. The Gauchos have made 102 three's to rank 72nd in the nation and are 81st with 293 attempts. Percentage wise, UCSB is hitting on a 34.8 percent clip, good for 78th in the nation, and rank second in all three-point categories, sans attempts, to UC Davis. Individually, Sarah Porter leads the way with an average of 2.3 made three's per game on 6.7 attempts (28-for-80/35 percent) while freshman Sarah Bates is 21-for-53 on the season (39.6 percent) and has five games with at least three made three's. Aliceah Hernandez leads the team with a 42.6 percentage (20-for-47). 

Danae Dishing it Out
Freshman point guard Danae Miller tied her career-high with six assists against New Mexico State on Friday and now has 41 to lead UCSB this season. She also tallied six dimes at Santa Clara and has four games with five assists or more. Her average of 3.4 assists per game leads all freshman in the Big West and ranks sixth overall. 

Durr Getting Defensive
Senior forward Chaya Durr has showcased her defensive ability over the past few games, beginning with a career-high six steal performance against LMU (Dec. 18) and followed it up with two more steals against San Diego State (Dec. 22). She has also tallied one block in each of the past three games and is tied for the team lead in that category. In addition to her defensive prowess, Durr has made a three-pointer in three straight games. She had only made one in her career prior to this season. 

Boards for Bruening
6-foot-4 sophomore center Natalia Bruening brought down a career-high 12 rebounds in 18 minutes of action against New Mexico State on Friday. The Newport Beach native had never reached double-figures in rebounding in her career and surpassed her previous high of seven rebounds, which she had against UCLA last season.

By the Numbers
The Gauchos are currently averaging 63.8 points per game, shooting 39.6 percent (276-for-697) from the floor, 39.6 percent (102-for-293) from downtown and 70.4 percent (112-for-159) from the free-throw line. UCSB's opponents, meanwhile, are averaging 71.3 points per game while shooting 45.8 percent (329-for-718) from the field.