DAVIS, Calif. — Junior Morgan Bertsch finished with a game-high 22 points to pace four players in double figures and the visiting Aggies shot 72 percent from the field as part of a 52-point second half, lifting UC Davis to an, 83-71, victory over host Long Beach State on Thursday night at the Walter Pyramid.
The No. 7-ranked team in the College Insider Mid-Major poll, the Aggies won their 18th consecutive Big West Conference regular season contest — and their eighth straight overall — improving to 18-3 overall on the season and a perfect 8-0 in league play. The 18-game conference winning streak is tied for the sixth-longest in the history of the league and is the longest since UC Riverside won the same number from Jan. 7, 2016, to Jan. 12, 2017.
Led by 16 points from Naomi Hunt, the 49ers fell to 2-19 overall and 0-7 in league play, finishing with four players in double figures as well and shooting 42 percent from the floor for the game.
Bertsch, a biomedical engineering major, finished 9-of-15 from the floor and hit all four of her free throws en route to her game-high total, adding seven rebounds, three assists, and a pair of steals. The nine makes give her 182 for the year, moving her into fourth place on the school’s Division I single-season list, while the 22 points puts her just six shy of Paige Mintun for fifth on the all-time scoring list.
Senior political science major Pele Gianotti added 17 points and six rebounds, hitting 6-of-12 from he floor, while freshman Cierra Hall, who was playing less than 10 miles away from her hometown of Cypress, Calif., added a career-high 17 points and seven rebounds, hitting all six of her shots from the floor — including 2-2 from beyond the arc.
Senior psychology major Rachel Nagel added 10 more points to go with eight rebounds, four assists, and two blocks, while junior psychology major Kourtney Eaton finished with six points, a career-high tying nine rebounds, and seven assists.
Tied at 19 after one, and knotted up at 31-all at halftime, the Aggies came out firing in the third quarter, hitting 9-of-12 from the field while holding Long Beach State to just 33 percent in building their largest lead of the game at 11 points, 57-46, after three periods. A 7-0 burst midway through the quarter gave UC Davis an eight-point advantage after the 49ers had closed to within a single point, and the Aggies finished the period on a 12-3 run over the final 2:48 for a lead they would never relinquish.
Long Beach State climbed back to within four points late in the fourth quarter thanks, in part, to 4-of-5 shooting from beyond the arc, but another lengthy run — this a 9-0 burst capped by a pair from the line by Hall — put the Aggies up by 13, and the 49ers could manage only one field goal and a pair of free throws over the final three and a half minutes.
The 52 points in the second half are tied for the most by UC Davis in any half this season, matching the 52-point first half against Washington State in the season opener back on Nov. 10. The Aggies out-rebounded their hosts, 42-19, for the game as five players finished with six-or-more rebounds.
UC Davis closes out its stay in Southern California on Saturday (Feb. 3) at 4 p.m., heading to CSUN to take on the Matadors.
UC DAVIS 83, LONG BEACH STATE 71
UC DAVIS (18-3 (8-0 BWC))
Bertsch, Morgan 9-15 4-4 22; Hall, Cierra 6-6 3-5 17; Gianotti, Pele 6-12 2-2 17; Nagel, Rachel 3-7 2-2 10; Anderson, Marly 4-5 0-0 8; Eaton, Kourtney 2-5 0-0 6; Nafekh, Dani 1-1 0-0 3; Song, Sophia 0-0 0-0 0; Bessolo, Nina 0-1 0-0 0; Eaton, Karley 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 31-53 11-13 83.
LONG BEACH STATE (2-19 (0-7 BWC))
Hunt, Naomi 6-12 1-2 16; Davison, Shanaijah 6-19 0-0 14; Berry, Ma'Qhi 4-10 3-3 11; Gertz, Jessica 4-8 0-0 11; Wilson, Cecily 4-7 1-2 9; Merriweather, Emma 2-3 2-2 6; VanHouten, Mason 0-0 2-2 2; McCowan, Martina 1-6 0-0 2. Totals 27-65 9-11 71.
UC Davis...................... 19 12 26 26 - 83
Long Beach State.............. 19 12 15 25 - 71
3-point goals--UC Davis 10-22 (Gianotti, Pele 3-7; Nagel, Rachel 2-6; Eaton, Kourtney 2-4; Hall, Cierra 2-2; Nafekh, Dani 1-1; Bessolo, Nina 0-1; Eaton, Karley 0-1), Long Beach State 8-19 (Gertz, Jessica 3-5; Hunt, Naomi 3-6; Davison, Shanaijah 2-5; McCowan, Martina 0-2; Berry, Ma'Qhi 0-1). Fouled out--UC Davis-None, Long Beach State-Merriweather, Emma. Rebounds--UC Davis 42 (Eaton, Kourtney 9), Long Beach State 19 (Wilson, Cecily 3; Gertz, Jessica 3; Merriweather, Emma 3). Assists--UC Davis 22 (Eaton, Kourtney 7), Long Beach State 15 (Davison, Shanaijah 6). Total fouls--UC Davis 11, Long Beach State 18. Technical fouls--UC Davis-None, Long Beach State-None. A-662
SAAC COIN DRIVE
Support the UC Davis Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and the Yolo County SPCA during the month of February as the Aggies hold their 11th annual coin drive at all home events. For the fourth year in a row, Big West Conference institutions will donate 100 percent of the funds raised to their designated charities, with the top three fundraising SAAC’s receiving a cash prize toward their SAAC budget. Over the last 10 years, conference members have combined to raise nearly $197,000.
ABOUT UC DAVIS
Providing a small-town community feel while providing a world-class academic experience, UC Davis is home to more than 37,000 students and centrally located between San Francisco, Lake Tahoe, and the Napa Valley. The No. 6-ranked public university in the nation according to the Wall Street Journal, and among the top 10 public universities nationwide according to U.S. News and World Report, UC Davis offers nearly 100 graduate programs and more than 100 academic majors across four colleges and six professional schools, ranking among the world and nation's best in numerous disciplines, including veterinary science, agriculture, and plant and animal programs.
PACK THE PAVILION!
Season and single-game tickets for UC Davis men's and women's basketball are now on sale by contacting the Athletics Ticket Office at (530) 752-AGS1 or by visiting us online at UCDavisAggies.com.