Jan. 12, 2008
Fullerton, Calif. -
James Powell scored 20 points and Chris Devine had 18 Saturday night to lead UC Santa Barbara to an 87-72 Big West Conference victory at Cal State Fullerton.
The Titans lost their first Big West game in four outings and fell to 10-5 overall. Josh Akognon led the way with 17 points but måde only 3 of 16 shots from the floor and only 1 of 11 3-point tries.
UCSB snapped a 2-game losing streak and improved to 13-4, 2-2 after shooting a season's best 64.8 percent from the floor.
Justin Joyner and Alex Harris each had 13 points for the Gauchos. Scott Cutley had 15 points and 8 rebounds and Frank Robinson had a game-high 10 rebounds.
UCSB led the final 36 minutes, taking the lead with an 11-2 run for a 15-10 advantage that grew as large as 12 points and was 9 points at the half. In the second half, the Gauchos led 49-34 with 15:49 to play. Fullerton scored 11 unanswered points to pull within 4 at 49-45 but Joyner hit a 3-pointer and Harris hit two free throws and the Titans never got closer than 7 points again.
For Harris, the Big West' leading scorer at 21.7 ppg, it was a season low. Akognon, the league's No. 2 scorer at 20.8 ppg and the No. 1 3-point maker at more than 4 per game, had his worst shooting night of the season but made 10 of 11 free throws. The Titans shot only 34 percent from the floor and 23 percent from behind the arc, making only 5 of 22, half of their season's average of 10.
Fullerton travels next week to Pacific and UC Davis while the Gauchos have only one game, a home contest vs. Cal Poly on Saturday.