February 11, 2006
With the 86-73 loss, Northern Colorado falls to 4-22 on the season, snapping their two-game winning streak. UC Davis improved to 8-15 on the year, their second consecutive victory.
UC Davis now leads the all-time series 3-1. The Aggies won 79-57 last year in Greeley.
The trip was the third of the season to the state of California for the Bears, who played in the Cal Golden Bear Classic in November and at Loyola Marymount in December. The team's last win over a California school was on Nov. 29, 2002, a victory over NAIA Holy Names (they have now lost seven in a row to California schools). Northern Colorado's last win in the state of California came on Jan. 15, 1977, when they beat UC Irvine 62-59.
Northern Colorado used a starting lineup of Matt Kline, Sean Taibi, Erik Olson, Dwayne Birden and Kirk Archibeque for the 11th time this season and the fourth time in a row.
UC Davis shot the ball extremely well in the first half, 65.4% (17-of-26), which helped them grab an early lead. The Aggies jumped out to an 11-1 lead and led 30-14 at one point following a 15-4 spurt. The Davis lead reached as high 18 points (40-22), before the Bears fought back. Thanasi Panagiotakopoulos scored, followed by four points from Cory Lowe. UCD then hit a 3-pointer, but Michael Gordy scored four points and Taibi hit on two free throws to extend the Bears run to 14-5 over the final five minutes of the half.
UC Davis would lead 45-34 at the break. Kyle Brucculeri led UC Davis with 15 points at the half, hitting on 5-of-6 3-pointers. As a team, UCD hit on 6-of-10 (60%) from the 3-point line.
Northern Colorado was led by 11 points from Lowe, a Bay Area native who had several family members and friends in attendance to watch. Lowe hit on 4-of-4 from field goal attempts in the opening half. Gordy added eight points for the Bears who hit on 50% from the field (13-of-26) and 88.9% (8-of-9) from the free throw line during the opening frame.
Northern Colorado got to within eight points on the first possession of the first half when Taibi hit a 3-pointer. Unfortunately the Bears would not get any closer, as each time they made a run, the Aggies would answer with a big hit or knock down key free throws.
UC Davis shot 59.1% on the night, a season-high for a Bears opponent. The previous high had been 56.6% by Northwestern on Jan. 1.
Taibi hit on 3-of-6 3-pointers on the night, moving his season total to 70, pushing him past Derek Chaney (68) for second most in a single-season in school history. He needs just five 3-pointers to tie the single-season mark of 75 held by Sean Nolen (2002-03 season). After going 0-for-2 in the first half, Taibi did not connect on his first 3-pointer until the first minute of the second half.
The Bears also shot the ball well, hitting 55.6% (25-of-45) from the field, the third consecutive game (and 6th time this season) they have hit 50 percent or better in a game.
The game was the 108th of the 4-year career for Erik Olson, which is the sixth most in school history. Olson matched his career-high with four steals, pushing his career total to 120, sixth most all-time. He grabbed one rebound and now has 559 career caroms, 14 away from the school's top-10 list.
Both sets of coaches wore tennis shoes for the game as part of a Coaches vs. Cancer national promotion to raise awareness for Cancer.
Northern Colorado is back in action on Wednesday night (Feb. 15) when they take on in-state rival Denver (13-12) at 7 p.m. The game can be heard live on 1310 KFKA and also seen live on FSN Rocky Mountain (Comcast Ch. 26 in Greeley, DirecTV Ch. 645, Dish Network Ch. 414). Denver defeated the Bears 79-73 in Greeley on Jan. 11 of this season.
UC Davis Post Game Notes
Feb. 11, 2006