On Thursday, Feb. 7, the University of California, Santa Barbara men’s basketball team played UC Davis. The Gauchos lost to the Aggies 64-56 and continued their five game losing streak, placing them at 7-15 overall and 3-8 in the conference.
The Aggies were led by sophomore guard and Big West leading scorer Corey Hawkins. Hawkins went 8 of 14 from the field and had 20 points along with nine rebounds. Junior guard Ryan Sypkens contributed from the three point line and posted 15 points toward the Aggies’ victory and the Gauchos’ frustrating loss. The Aggies outshot the Gauchos by shooting 48.9 percent from the field against the Gauchos’ 34.9 percent.
The bright side for the Gauchos was that sophomore big man Al Williams led the team in scoring with 15 points and 13 rebounds in his second game back from his hamstring injury, which had sidelined him for a total of three games. Kyle Boswell showed up to play and did his best to rally the Gauchos by contributing 14 points and some timely big shots from the three point line.
Overall the Gauchos were just outshot and outplayed. There’s no way around it—the Aggies were just more efficient with the ball, but the Gauchos never quit fighting and showed some flashes of brilliance from time to time.
Fourth-year psychology major Amit Rawal said, “We tried really hard, it’s just that our shots weren’t going in. We fought for rebounds, which was good. It’s kind of disappointing but we have a good team, you know we have fresh kids. We have only one senior on the team.”
When asked about the chances of salvaging the season, Rawal said, “Of course we can, once we get into the tournament. UCSB has always done great in the conference tournament. Let’s see if we can turn it on at the end when it really matters.”
UCSB’s next game will be Saturday, Feb. 9, and they will be taking on a stout University of Pacific team. The night will also feature a special honoring of “The Legends of the Dome.”