Sunday, February 21, 2010

UCSB defeats Fresno State in ESPN Bracket Buster 64 - 60

Click on photo to enlarge.

The UCSB Men's basketball team extended their road winning streak by defeating the Fresno State Bulldogs in the Save Mart Center 64 - 60. The Gauchos (16 - 8) recorded their fourth road victory--and fifth overall, in a non-conference match up against the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) foe as part of the ESPN Bracket Buster series.

Orlando Johnson led the victory with 23 points, including a monster dunk in the second half. James Powell chipped in 10 points, including two free throws near the end of the game to clinch the win. James Nunnally led the Gauchos on the boards with seven rebounds, and Jon Pastorek contributed four assists.

However, it was Greg Somogyi's record-setting eight blocked shots that set the tone for the game. The Bulldogs (13 - 14) continued to challenge Somogyi in the paint, despite being rejected early and often. Somogyi also deflected or altered many shots when patrolling the lane, while managing to not foul out. Somogyi had a pair of two-handed flushes and a clever give-and-go assist to Will Brew, combining power and finesse. Somogyi's recent improvement bodes well for the Gauchos as they approach the all-important Big West Tournament in Anaheim next month.

Fresno State was led by Mike Ladd's and Paul George's 16 and 13 points, respectively. Sylvester Seay had eight rebounds while George grabbed seven. However, both post players (Seay and George) were plagued with foul problems, which limited their minutes and effectiveness. Credit the suffocating Gaucho defense for this victory.

The Gauchos resume Big West Conference play against Cal. State, Northridge on Wedneday, February 24 at 7 pm, in a game at the Thunderdome.

Box Score

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