Aggies Return Home to Face Argonauts

Joe Harden scored a career high 27 points at California
Joe Harden scored a career high 27 points at California

Dec. 2, 2010

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UC Davis (3-5, 0-0)
Notre Dame de Namur (0-4, 0-0)

Saturday, December 4, 2010
7:00 p.m. (PST) - Davis, Calif.
The Pavilion (7,100)
KFSG (1690 AM)

- UC Davis is coming off a 74-62 loss at California. The Aggies did not lead in the second half, but hung tough in the first period with five ties and four lead changes.   
- Joe Harden poured in a career high 27 points on 11 of 19 shooting. His 11 field goals made vs. the Golden Bears also marks a career high for the senior.  Harden has had back-to-back standout games, having scored his 1000th point vs. Seattle.    
- Mark Payne recorded 15 points and 5 assists at Cal, moving into 15th place overall on the all-time scoring list. Payne is also now tied for 2nd in career assists with 380.
- The Aggies played in front of their biggest crowd of the season at Haas Pavilion, with 6,753 fans in attendance. The attendance vs. Cal more than triples the next largest crowd UC Davis has played in front of. (1,855 at Portland)  
- Notre Dame de Namur comes into Saturday’s contest with a 0-4 overall record, having recently lost to San Francisco State, 76-59.  The Argonauts played UC San Diego the day before SFSU, dropping a 53-42 contest.   
- Notre Dame de Namur is a Division II NCAA member, competing in the Pacific West Conference
- Saturday’s game will mark the second non-Division I member that UC Davis has faced this season, having defeated UC Santa Cruz (a NCAA Division III member) 70-49 back on Nov. 17.
- The Argonauts play in the same conference as Academy of Art, who the Aggies lost to in an exhibition matchup, 67-62.
- The Pacific West is a competitive Division II conference, with BYU-Hawaii, Hawai’i Hilo and Chaminade as some of the top contenders. Chaminade upset Oklahoma earlier this season, 68-64.  Chaminade was the only non-Division I member to participate in the Maui Invitational, an eight team tournament.

ALL-TIME SERIES                
Saturday’s game will mark the 24th meeting between UC Davis and Notre Dame de Namur with the Aggies holding a 21-2 advantage in the all-time series.  The two teams have not met in over a decade, with UC Davis winning the last meeting, 67-52, during the 1997-98 season.  

Gary Stewart is in his 18th year as a head coach and his 8th season with the Aggies.  He currently owns a 223-252 overall record and a 81-133 mark on the sidelines with UC Davis.  Stewart was with the Aggies during all four years of the transition to Division I and is set to lead the program into their fourth year as a D1 member.

George Puou holds a 98-154 record in his 11th year with the Argonauts, having spent his entire head coaching career at Notre Dame de Namur. Prior to his arrival at NDNU, Puou was the assistant coach at St. Mary’s College in Moraga.  He also served as an assistant coach for the Panasonic Men’s Basketball Team in Japan after retiring as a player in 1997. Coach Puou was a standout basketball player while attending San Jose State University where he was selected as the team’s Most Valuable Player in 1987. He went on to earn his BA in advertising with a minor in business from San Jose State and played professionally in Japan from 1991-1997.  Puou is also the Director of Men’s and Women’s Golf at NDNU.

The Argonauts come into Saturday’s matchup with a 0-4 overall record. NDNU most recently dropped a 76-59 decision vs. San Francisco State at home, in the NDNU Thanksgiving Classic Tournament. The Argonauts also fell to UC San Diego in their home tourney, after a 53-42 defeat. NDNU is a member of NCAA Division II and competes in the Pacific West Conference. Last season, they finished with a 4-23 overall record and a 2-14 mark in league play.  This season, the Argonauts were picked to finish ninth in conference play, ahead of Academy of Art, who the Aggies played in an exhibition game, earlier this season.

Saturday’s contest will air on KFSG (1690 AM) with Scott Marsh on the call. Bill Herenda will also provide analysis for the game. The broadcast will be simulcast on through Game Central by Stretch Internet.  The game will also be streamed live and available to watch on on Big West TV.  Live stat are available via, with a tip time set for 7:00 p.m. PT.

LAST TIME OUT                                   
The Aggies had a strong showing at California, but ultimately fell, 74-62.  After trailing 39-30 at the break, UC Davis had the lead down to six mid-way through the second half.  Cal exploded from there for a 13-1 run, taking a double digit lead that they would not surrender.  The Aggies did manage five ties and four lead changes in a back and forth first half.  Joe Harden poured in a game high and career high 27 points on 11 of 19 shooing for UC Davis.  Mark Payne also chipped in with 15 points, five assists and four rebounds for the Aggies.

HARDEN’S SCORING HEIGHTS                            
Senior Joe Harden has lived up to his preseason All-Conference selection, leading the Aggies in scoring and rebounding this season.  Harden scored his 1000th career point vs. Seattle, followed by a career high 27 points in the next game vs. California.  Even more impressive is that he has reached the 1000 point milestone in just three seasons with UC Davis, after transferring from Notre Dame.  Harden is one of just five Aggies in history to reach 1000 career points in three seasons.  He is currently on pace to be the all-time leading scorer among three year players.  John Frost (1965-68) leads the group with 1,346 career points.

SHOTS FROM THE HEART                               
Head coach Gary Stewart and assistant coach Kevin Nosek are participating in’s “Shots From the Heart.” The objective of Shots From the Heart is to help create more awareness for the growing problem of Heart Disease and to raise money to benefit the American Heart Association during the 2010-11 season. The event will also play tribute to the late Skip Prosser who passed away on July 26, 2007 of a heart attack. To do this, college basketball coaches have been competing against one another in a free throw shooting tournament.  The tournaments started in November with separate brackets for head and assistant coaches and the winners advancing to the next round.

Both coaches for the Aggies advanced in the first round and will play their second round matchup sometime from Dec. 16 - Dec. 31.  Coach Stewart downed John Beilein from Michigan in the first round, 27-25, while coach Nosek took a win over Kurtis Townsend of Kansas, 29-24.  The second round matchup pairs coach Stewart vs. Mike Londergan of Vermont, while coach Nosek will face off with Alvin Brooks III of Sam Houston State.

CHECK THAT... (PART II)                               
Another stat correction this season ended up providing another noteworthy accomplishment.  In the Nov. 27 game vs. Seattle, freshman Mike Kurtz was originally credited with four blocks. It was later revealed that Kurtz should have had five blocks.  The five blocks for Kurtz ties a single game UC Davis record. Kurts now shares the record with Jason Cox (vs. St. Rose (N.Y.), 3/19/98) and Randy DeBortoli (vs. Cal State Hayward, 2/6/88).

LOWENTHAL  IN THE NCAA RANKS                           
With the first NCAA statistical rankings posted on Monday, Nov. 29th, Todd Lowenthal is the only player for the Aggies that received an individual ranking in the top 100.  Lowenthal leads the team in assists and steals and is among the nation’s best with 2.3 steals per game (57th) and a 2.36 assist to turnover ratio (85th).  The next highest ranking for UC Davis is Mark Payne, who is shooting 82.2 percent from the free-throw line (182nd). As a team, the Aggies are ranked 93rd in free-throw percentage, shooting 71.1 percent.

Q&A WITH STEWART AND PAYNE                           
In the Nov. 29, 2010 issue of ESPN the Magazine, there is an article on page 64 about “hybrid players.” Senior guard Mark Payne (6-8, 215 lbs.) was originally interviewed to be included in the article, with head coach Gary Stewart also commenting on Payne’s status as a hybrid player.  The Payne section was eventually left out of the final article, but the Q&A session with Payne and Stewart is available online to read.  Visit and check out the “around the web” section to access a link to the conversations.

UC Davis has picked up a televised game this season at home vs. UC Riverside on January 27th, with a tip time set for 7 p.m. The recently added game will air on Comcast California.  The Aggies play in four televised games this season, but the Jan. 27th tilt will be the only home contest televised for UC Davis.
CAUSEWAY CUP CONTINUES                           
UC Davis jumped ahead in the Causeway Cup standings after a dramatic 17-16 win in the football Causeway Classic on Saturday, Nov. 20. The Causeway Cup awards points to either UC Davis or Sacramento State. Each of the schools’ 18 common teams usually compete against each other at least once during the year. The winner is given the pre-determined amount of points of either five or 10. If the two schools meet just once in a season, then all the points will go to the winning team. But if the teams play each other two times or more, the points are divided by how many meetings occur. A men’s basketball win just three days after football gave the Aggies a commanding 37.5 - 15.0 lead in the 2010-11 Causeway Cup standings.  The winner of the cup must score more than 50 points out of a possible 100.  Last year, UC Davis took a 55.83 - 44.17 victory over Sacramento State.

CHECK THAT...                                   
After checking the stats from previous games, an interesting correction has been made to the first game of the season vs. Florida Atlantic. In that game, Mark Payne was originally credited with 13 free throws on 13 attempts.  After the error was revealed, Payne was 14 of 14 at the line vs. FAU.  Not only did the correction give Payne a 20-10 game, but the 14 free throws made ties a career high for the senior guard.

AGGIES INK JT ADENRELE                               
The UC Davis men’s basketball team announced Wednesday, Nov. 17 that JT Adenrele from Oakmont High School in Roseville, has signed a National Letter of Intent and will join the Aggies next fall. Adenrele, a 6-foot-6 220-pound forward, helped lead Oakmont to an impressive 25-8 overall record during the 2009-10 season.  They also finished second place in their division with a 9-3 record and advanced to the section semifinals under head coach Rick Campbell. Adenrele averaged 11.4 points, 9.0 rebounds and 3.8 blocks per game at Oakmont as a junior.  For his play in the 2009-10 season, he was awarded SFL League Honorable Mention.  Adenrele also played AAU during the off season from spring through summer, under coach Ernest Taubodo with the E-Times Hoops Academy.

DOUBLE TROUBLE                               
Joe Harden and Mark Payne have both put together double-doubles this season, with Harden posting two consecutive in the most recent games.  Throughout the season, all double-doubles by the Aggies will be monitored on a game-by-game basis.  

Joe Harden        Mark Payne
UC Santa Cruz 11-17 - 16 pts./11 rebs.        Florida Atlantic 11-12 - 20 pts./11 rebs.
Wisc.-Milwaukee 11-14 - 21 pts./11 rebs.

1000 POINT WATCH                               
Seniors Joe Harden and Mark Payne entered the season just shy of the 1000-point plateau, with each player starting the year with over 900 points.  Payne reached the career milestone on Nov. 14 vs. Wisc.-Milwaukee, scoring 17 points in the game and becoming the 17th member of the UC Davis 1000-point club.  Harden Scored his 1000th on Nov. 27 vs. Seattle, scoring 16 points in the game.  The progress of the overall career standings for both players will be monitored on a game-by-game basis.

13. Jason Robedeaux, 1983-85, ‘86-88 - 1,112 career points
14. Alan Steed, 1967-70 - 1,107 career points
15. Mark Payne, 2007-present - 1,067 career points
16. Thomas Juillerat, 2003-07 - 1,059 career points
17. Dante Ross, 1996-99 - 1,052 career points
18. Joe Harden, 2008-present - 1,034 career points

NO PAYNE NO GAIN                               
Despite missing eight games due to injury last season, senior guard Mark Payne was the Big West active career leader in three separate categories entering the 2010-11 season, including points (964), assists (352) and steals (149).  

In the UC Davis record books, Payne is also in the top ten in career assists and steals and climbing the leader board.  His progress will be monitored on a game-by-game basis.

1. Angelo Rivers, 1982-86        467    1. Dante Ross, 1996-99            186
2. Dante Ross, 1996-99        380    2. Angelo Rivers, 1983-86        180
   Mark Payne, 2007-Present        380    3. Chris Familetti, 1988-89, ‘90-92        172
                    4. Mark Payne, 2007-Present        152

WINNING BREEDS WINNING                               
There has been a common theme for the UC Davis men’s basketball team over the past three years: consistent improvement.  

2007-08 season: nine wins, two conference wins.  2008-09 season:  13 wins, seven conference wins.  2009-10 season:  14 wins, eight conference wins.

Coach Stewart is hoping that the Aggies will look to improve on that mark again this season.  

“The theme is return and advance,” said Stewart.  “We want to get to the upper echelon of the conference, return to the conference tournament and advance farther than we did last year.  The charge again is to continue to move the program forward, trying to build on some of the successes that we had last year.  We feel like if we can remain healthy, we have a golden opportunity to do that.”

COACH Gary Stewart ON TWITTER                           
This season we will keep up with head coach Gary Stewart on Twitter, “retweeting” his latest tweets, starting with the most recent ones.  

“I am fired up! Go Ags!”
15 Oct

“First day of “official” basketball practice! We are two hours away from taking the floor.........”
15 Oct

“Coach Gross is an incredible teacher/coach. Without question, she will continue the long line of outstanding wbb coaches to lead the Ags!”
8 Oct

“and.......Congratulations to Jennifer Gross, who was named the Head Women’s Basketball Coach for the 2011-12 season and beyond!”
8 Oct

“I am looking forward to seeing him coach one last season at the helm of the Ags!”
8 Oct

“On behalf of the entire men’s basketball program at UC Davis, we wish him a retirement filled with joy and great health.”
8 Oct

“UC Davis Women’s Basketball Coach, Sandy Simpson, announces his retirement. Simple put, he is an outstanding coach and a wonderful person.”
8 Oct

“First day of school, 2010-11. Go Ags!”
23 Sep

NOTABLE NON-CONFERENCE GAMES                           
Cal and perennial national power UCLA highlight a schedule that features three non-conference teams that reached the 20-win plateau. Pac-10 regular-season champion Cal, which beat Louisville in the first round of the NCAA Tournament before losing to eventual national champion Duke in the second, finished 24-11. The Bears will host the Aggies on Dec. 1 at Haas Pavilion as the teams meet for the first time since the 1986-87 season. The Aggies and Bruins will play on Dec. 13 at legendary Pauley Pavilion, facing each other for the second time in the past four seasons. Cal joins Wisc.-Milwaukee (20-14) and Portland (21-11) as 20-game winners on the Aggies’ non-conference schedule.

TELEVISED GAMES                               
UC Davis has a guarantee of three televised games this season, with the possibility of more to come.  Currently, the Aggies will make appearances in games vs. UCLA, Long Beach State and UC Santa Barbara.  In the Dec. 13 matchup with the Bruins, the game will be televised on Prime Ticket.  ESPNU will cover the Long Beach State game on Jan. 12, while the Feb. 2 tilt with UC Santa Barbara will also be on Prime Ticket.  

HARDEN’S PRESEASON PLAUDIT                           
Senior guard Joe Harden was named to the Big West Preseason All-Conference Team, voted on by a panel of media members.  Harden has been selected to the Big West All-Conference Second Team the past two seasons.  Last season, he was also named to the 2010 Big West All Tournament Team and he was named the 2009-10 Best Hustle Player in the Big West.  Entering the 2010-11 season, Harden was third in active career leaders in points (908) and rebounds (445).