DAVIS, Calif. - Freshman Siler Schneider hit a corner three off a pass from Josh Fox with 1.7 seconds remaining on Thursday night as UC Davis answered a late bucket by CSUN's Micheal Warren with 11 seconds to go, as the Aggies beat the Matadors, 63-62, in a Big West men's basketball game before 2,498 fans at the Pavilion.
The win gave UC Davis its first Big West win of the season, lifting the Aggies to 6-10 overall and 1-2 in the conference. Schneider had 17 points and four assists while Fox had 13 points and Brynton Lemar added 10. Neal Monson grabbed a team-high 13 rebounds, just missing a double-double after also scoring eight points.
Monson entered Thursday's game with a league-high 8.6 rebound per game average, and will most likely remain the league's top rebounder when the second week of Big West play concludes on Saturday. The junior center, coming off a 13-rebound effort at Long Beach State last Saturday, now has six double-figure rebound games to his credit this season.
UC Davis has now won its last nine Big West home games, five straight head-to-head matchups and the last seven in a row vs. CSUN on Hamilton Court.
When asked to recall past highlight-reel shots after the game, Schneider replied, "Not as big as this one."
"A game like this will definitely help us moving forward; we did a great job bringing what happens in practice into the game, and being consistent with (our play)."
"We've competed in a number of close games, and have faced opportunities down the stretch to win. Sometimes you need to suffer some setbacks to learn how to win in those situations since it is a learned behavior," said UC Davis head coach Jim Les.
"I think this group showed some great resolve and mental toughness down the stretch. Everyone on the floor made big plays, I could not be more proud of them."
Warren had 16 points for CSUN, which fell to 6-11 and 1-2. Aaron Parks scored 13 and Tavrion Dawson pitched in with 10. Kendall Smith, who entered with a team-high 20.3 points per game scoring average finished with a season-low eight points on two field goals -- another season low.
The Aggies, down by 11 with 13 minutes to play, rallied to within 58-56 with 5:12 left, thanks to a 13-4 run. Fox finally broke through to knot the game, 60-60, on a layup with 41 seconds on the clock.
Warren's runner in the key with 11 seconds remaining put CSUN up 62-60 but the Aggies raced down the court, Fox drove the lane and dished to the far corner to Schneider, who nailed the 3-pointer to send the fans into a frenzy.
CSUN led nearly the entire game up to that thrilling finish. It took more than two minutes for either team to score before a 5-0 Matadors run put them up 11-6. Darius Graham's trey with 8:49 left in the half tied the game, 19-19, while four different players scored to key eight straight CSUN points that put it up 33-24 late in the half. It led 35-28 at the break.
A free throw by Schneider got the Aggies to within 45-41 four minutes into the second half before two layups by Warren helped the Matadors build breathing room at 51-41 two minutes later. Olalekan Ajayi's jumper midway through the half gave CSUN its second 11-point lead of the half at 56-45.
But four points from Monson, a 3-pointer by Lawrence White and a jumper by Fox rallied UC Davis to within 58-56 with 5:12 left and preceded the exciting finish.
"We needed to string together some stops and mix up our defenses. I liked the swagger and look of our guys when they walked over to the sideline during timeouts. They were not going to be denied," added Les.
"Each guy made big plays: Brynton drew a charge, Neal came up with some big rebounds, Darius was able to penetrate (CSUN's defense) and set things up (on offense) late in the game. That was huge."
The Aggies outrebounded CSUN 36-26 and shot .636 (7 of 11) from 3-point territory. UC Davis is off until Jan. 21 when UC Riverside visits the Pavilion.
UC DAVIS 63, CSUN 62
CSUN (6-11, 1-2 BWC)
Warren, Micheal 7-12 2-3 16; Parks, Aaron 5-10 3-4 13; Dawson, Tavrion 5-7 0-0 10; Smith, Kendall 2-9 4-6 8; Ajayi, Olalekan 3-4 0-0 6; Wilbut, Jerron 2-7 0-0 5; Douglas, Zacarry 1-1 0-0 2; Hale-Edmerson, Tre 1-3 0-0 2; Richardson, Jason 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 26-54 9-13 62.
UC DAVIS (6-10, 1-2 BWC)
Schneider, Siler 6-10 3-4 17; Fox, Josh 6-12 1-1 13; Lemar, Brynton 4-10 0-0 10; Graham, Darius 2-4 2-4 8; Monson, Neal 4-10 0-4 8; White, Lawrence 2-3 0-0 5; Goode, Garrison 1-3 0-2 2; Printup, Rogers 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 25-53 6-15 63.
CSUN........................... 35 27 - 62
UC Davis...................... 28 35 - 63
3-point goals--CSUN 1-8 (Wilbut, Jerron 1-4; Smith, Kendall 0-3; Warren, Micheal 0-1), UC Davis 7-11 (Lemar, Brynton 2-2; Graham, Darius 2-2; Schneider, Siler 2-4; White, Lawrence 1-2; Printup, Rogers 0-1). Fouled out--CSUN-None, UC Davis-None. Rebounds--CSUN 26 (Ajayi, Olalekan 7), UC Davis 36 (Monson, Neal 13). Assists--CSUN 16 (Warren, Micheal 6; Smith, Kendall 6), UC Davis 14 (Graham, Darius 5). Total fouls--CSUN 17, UC Davis 16. Technical fouls--CSUN-Hale-Edmerson, Tre, UC Davis-Schneider, Siler. A-2498.