Aggies Pull Away Late For Victory Over Grand Canyon

Feb. 20, 2004

Box Score

DAVIS, Calif. - Thomas Juillerat scored a season-high 23 points and the Aggies closed on a 17-4 run as UC Davis won its seventh-straight game with an 85-69 victory over Grand Canyon in a California Collegiate Athletic Association men's contest in front of 2,496 Friday evening at Recreation Hall.

With the win the Aggies improve to 16-6 on the season, 13-4 in CCAA play. Grand Canyon falls to 3-19 overall, 2-15 in conference action.

UC Davis scored the first 10 points of the contest as Fowzi Abdelsamad hit back-to-back three-pointers in the stretch. Brian Hunter finally broke the drought with a layup at the 16-minute mark. The lead stayed near double-digits until late in the half when the Antelopes cut it to five with just over five minutes remaining after another Hunter layup.

Abdelsamad hit a jumper with under a minute to play to push the lead back to 10 before settling for a 39-31 lead heading into halftime. Abdelsamad had 14 points in the first half while Juillerat added 12 to account for the bulk of the Aggie scoring.

In the second half UC Davis extended the lead to 14 four minutes in, but the Antelopes fought back over the next six minutes. Canyon went on a 22-9 run to force their first tie of the game at 59-59 with 9:11 left. Royce Hall scored seven and Curtis Green six in the run for Grand Canyon.

The game remained close over the next three minutes until Rommel Marentez hit a three-pointer that gave the Aggies the lead for good. UC Davis methodically increased the margin as it made six consecutive field goals to take a 76-67 lead with 4:05 left. The Antelopes made their final basket with 3:50 remaining as the Aggies closed the game on a 9-0 run, five coming from Robert Ehsan free throws.

For the second straight game the Aggies committed single-digit turnovers, nine tonight after registering a season-low eight last Saturday at Sonoma. They also took advantage of 15 Antelope miscues, turning those into 21 points. The win gave UC Davis a seven-game winning streak, its longest since the 1999-2000 season, and gave the Aggies 12 wins in their last 13 games. The last Aggie team to accomplish that feat was the 1997-98 team, which closed out the season with 22 straight wins and a national championship.



"You have to give a lot of credit to Grand Canyon," said Aggie head coach Gary Stewart. "Leighton (McCrary) had an excellent game plan and they made it difficult for us to find our rhythm. In think we were able to wear them down a little with our depth. They beat us to every ball for much of the game, but in the last five minutes we were able to turn the tables and get every key rebound."

Juillerat added a team-high seven rebounds to his point total along with five assists to lead UC Davis. Abdelsamad finished with 19 points while Ehsan added a career-high 16 with three rebounds and three assists. Ryan Moore added 10 points, his 17th game this season in double figures.

Hall led the Antelopes with 17 points on the night while Hunter finished with 14 points and 10 boards. Brian Lee added 13 points and seven boards for the Antelopes, who finished the night shooting 52 percent from the field.

UC Davis returns to Recreation Hall on Saturday when it hosts UC San Diego. Gametime is set for 8 p.m.

GRAND CANYON (3-19, 2-15 CCAA)
Royce Hall 6-11 4-4 17, Brian Hunter 6-8 2-2 14, Brian Lee 4-7 5-6 13, Curtis Green 4-13 4-6 12, Frank Carranza 4-8 0-0 9, Jeremy Dahlberg 0-0 0-0 0, Caliph Mohammed 2-3 0-3 4, Ricky Greeg 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 26-50 15-21 31.

UC DAVIS (16-6, 13-4 CCAA)
Robert Ehsan 5-8 5-6 16, Ari Warmerdam 0-2 0-0 0, Thomas Juillerat 9-13 5-7 23, Fowzi Abdelsamad 6-14 2-2 19, Gus Argenal 2-2 0-0 5, Phil Rasmussen 1-3 0-0 3, JaQay Carlyle 2-3 0-0 4, Rommel Marentez 1-3 0-0 3, Ryan Moore 3-11 3-3 10, Anthony Esparza 1-2 0-1 2, Madison Butts 0-0 0-0 0, Ryan Schwarz 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 30-63 15-19 85.

Halftime: UC Davis 39-31. Three-Point Field Goals: UC Davis 10-22 (Abdelsamad 5-11, Marentez 1-1, Argenal 1-1, Ehsan 1-1, Rasmussen 1-3, Moore 1-5), GCU 2-13 (Carranza 1-4, Hall 1-4, Mohammed 0-1, Green 0-4). Rebounds: UC Davis 33 (Juillerat 7), GCU 31 (Hunter 10). Assists: UC Davis 24 (Marentez 6), GCU 11 (Hall 4). Turnovers: UC Davis 9, GCU 15. Fouls: UC Davis 18, GCU 19. Fouled Out: Hall. Att. 2,496.