January 16, 2006
With the 99-56 loss, Northern Colorado falls to 2-19 on the season while Texas A&M-Corpus Christi improves to 11-6 on the year.
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi leads the all-time series 3-0. The two teams will complete their season home-and-home series on Jan. 30 when the Islanders play in Greeley (3:30 p.m. MT). That game is part of a doubleheader with the women's team that day.
Northern Colorado is now 0-2 on the season against Division I Independents. Six of UNC's final eight games this season are against D-I Independent teams.
The loss was the 14th consecutive on the road for the Bears dating back to a win at Longwood last season.
Northern Colorado used a starting lineup of Matt Kline, Sean Taibi, Erik Olson, Dorian McDaniel and Kirk Archibeque for the first time this season. The lineup was the ninth different used by the Bears this season.
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi opened the game by hitting eight of its first nine shots (88.9%) in building a 18-6 lead (thanks in-part to a 9-0 early run) at the 11:51 mark of the half. The Bears, on the other hand, were cold to start, hitting only 1-of-5 to start the game.
Taibi would help keep the Bears close early, hitting three 3-pointers, as the Bears pulled to within eight at 22-14. But the Islanders would use a 15-0 run late in the half and ended the half on a 19-6 run to build a 52-25 halftime advantage.
Taibi's nine points led the Bears at the break, while Texas A&M-Corpus Christi was led by 10 points from Chris Daniels, one of 12 different Islanders to see action in the first half. TAMUCC hit 66.7% (18-of-27) in the first half while the Bears managed just 27.3% (6-of-22).
The Bears committed 16 turnovers in the opening half, after having less than 16 total turnovers in three of their last four games.
The 52 first half points by the Islanders were the most by a UNC opponent since 6th-ranked Syracuse scored 53 points in the opening game of the 2004-05 season (on their way to a 104-54 victory).
Taibi scored the first points of the second half before Texas A&M-Corpus Christi used a 13-0 run to pretty much put the game out of reach. That run, which when combined with the run to finish the first half was 32-6, gave the Islanders a 65-27 lead before the first media timeout of the second half.
TAMUCC would lead by as many as 44 (with 7:35 to play) on their way to the 43-point victory.
The Islanders, who played all 16 players on their roster, were led in scoring by Chris Daniels, who had 16 points on 8-of-11 shooting. 15 of the 16 Islanders scored at least two points.
The 43-point loss was the worst of the season for the Bears and worst since losing by 50 at Syracuse (Nov. 11, 2004).
The 99 points by the Islanders were the most scored by a Northern Colorado opponent since Syracuse scored 104 (Nov. 11, 2004).
Archibeque missed his first field goal attempt, ending a streak of 12 consecutive made field goals. The school record for consecutive field goals made is 16 by the program's all-time leading scorer Mike Higgins. He scored 13 points on 2-of-5 shooting but impressively hit 9-of-11 from the free throw line. He has scored in double figures in four straight, although he saw his streak of consecutive 20-plus point games end at three.
Taibi hit 3-of-9 from 3-point range, extending his streak of hitting at least one 3-pointer in every game this season. He leads the team with 54 3-pointers this season. He is on pace to hit 74 3-pointers, which would be one off the school record for 3-pointers in a season. Taibi, who has 98 career 3-pointers (10th most in school history) led the team with 15 points.
Olson was the third UNC player in double figures, scoring 12 points. He had two steals, which moved him his career steals total to 113, tying him for sixth on the Bears career steals list. He played in his 103rd career game.
Sophomore Thanasi Panagiotakopoulos returned to the lineup after missing the last six games due to an injury he suffered at Kansas (Dec. 22). He played 11 minutes and scored nine points and had two rebounds.
Northern Colorado hit only 13 field goals on the night, a season-low, and the lowest total in the past six seasons.
The Bears shot a season-low 28.9%, while TAMUCC hit 56.3%, the third straight UNC opponent to shoot 50% or better and fourth opponent in the last six games to reach that mark.
Northern Colorado returns to action next Saturday night when they face their third straight Division I Independent opponent in Utah Valley State in Orem. Game time is set for 7 p.m. MT.
Texas A&M-Corpus Christ Post Game Notes
Jan. 16, 2006