Strong second half from Shorts II nearly completes comeback

AJ John matched two career highs by scoring 13 points on five field goals in Saturday's game at Hawai'i.
Jan. 21, 2018

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HONOLULU - A three-pointer from junior psychology major AJ John pulled UC Davis within five with 25 seconds remaining in Saturday night's Big West Conference game in Honolulu, and junior communication major Siler Schneider's baseline jumper trimmed that deficit to three, but Hawai'i hung on by hitting its final two free throws of the evening wth 13 ticks left to push its lead to 77-72, the game's final score, and prevent the Aggies from winning their third head-to-head game in a row.

UC Davis will return to the Pavilion for Thursday's 7 p.m. contest vs. CSUN with a 12-7 overall and 3-2 league record. Hawai'i will continue its season-long homestand with records of 13-5 and 4-1.

Junior communication major TJ Shorts II sparked the Aggies's second-half comeback by scoring 16 of his team-high 21 points after halftime. At one point, he was responsible for 10 of his team's 11 points, which turned Hawai'i's double-digit lead into a one-possession margin. He was also responsible for five rebounds, five assists and two blocked shots, with the latter two totals ending up as team highs.

Including his total against the Rainbow Warriors, two of Shorts II's 20-point games took place during league play. 

Schneider added another 16 points, Senior communication major Chima Moneke scored 14 in addition to leading players with nine rebounds, and John matched two career highs by finishing with 13 points, on five field goals (out of six attempts) for the second game in a row.

Paced by Moneke, the Aggies outrebounded the `Bows 34-31, which led to 14 second-chance points compared to their opponents' four.

Both teams posted similar shooting percentages; UC Davis shot .431 overall (25-for-58) vs. Hawai'i's .436 clip (24-for-55) and the Aggies hit 19 shots at the line (out of 26 attempts) vs. the Rainbow Warriors' 21 (26 attempts). But UH hit five more threes than the Aggies, which helped seal the result.

"I thought this was a good atmosphere and an opportunity lost, in my opinion. This was a game that we could have won, you have to give Hawai'i credit. They played well and made the necessary plays," said UC Davis head coach Jim Les.

All five lead changes, and four tied scores took place throughout the opening half since UH entered the break with a 39-35 advantage. Even though they chipped away at the Rainbow Warriors' lead after halftime, the Aggies were unable to pull themselves closer than three points, which took place on two occasions.

As was the case with the Aggies, four UH players finished in double figures. Jack Purchase led all Hawai'i scorers with 21 points, followed by Sheriff Drammeh (14), Gibson Johnson and Leland Green (11 apiece).

With wins in its last 17 games on Hamilton Court, UC Davis, responsible for the highest home win percentage since the start of the 2014-15 season, will face CSUN and Cal Poly on Thursday and Saturday respectively.This will open a portion of its league slate that features four home games within a three-week timespan.


HAWAI'I 77, UC DAVIS 72

UC DAVIS (12-7, 3-2 BWC)
Shorts II, TJ 7-15 7-7 21; Schneider, Siler 6-18 3-7 16; Moneke, Chima 5-9 4-6 14; John, AJ 5-6 1-1 13; Mooney, Joe 2-4 0-0 4; Goode, Garrison 0-1 2-3 2; Onyebalu, Michael 0-5 2-2 2; Hennings, Arell 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 25-58 19-26 72.

HAWAI'I (13-5, 4-1 BWC)
Purchase, Jack 6-9 5-6 21; Drammeh, Sheriff 2-8 9-10 14; Johnson, Gibson 5-10 1-1 11; Green, Leland 4-8 1-2 11; Buggs, Drew 3-10 2-3 9; Thomas, Mike 3-4 0-0 6; Thomas, Brandon 1-5 3-4 5; Raimo, Zigmars 0-1 0-0 0; Avea, Samuta 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 24-55 21-26 77.

UC Davis...................... 35 37 - 72
Hawai'i........................ 39 38 - 77

3-point goals--UC Davis 3-19 (John, AJ 2-3; Schneider, Siler 1-8; Mooney, Joe 0-2; Onyebalu, Michael 0-4; Moneke, Chima 0-1; Shorts II, TJ 0-1), Hawai'i 8-20 (Purchase, Jack 4-7; Green, Leland 2-4; Drammeh, Sheriff 1-3; Buggs, Drew 1-3; Thomas, Brandon 0-2; Johnson, Gibson 0-1). Fouled out--UC Davis-None, Hawai'i-Drammeh, Sheriff; Buggs, Drew; Thomas, Mike. Rebounds--UC Davis 34 (Moneke, Chima 9), Hawai'i 31 (Purchase, Jack 7). Assists--UC Davis 8 (Shorts II, TJ 5), Hawai'i 13 (Buggs, Drew 7). Total fouls--UC Davis 25, Hawai'i 27. Technical fouls--UC Davis-TEAM, Hawai'i-Drammeh, Sheriff; Purchase, Jack. A-6581



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