As autumn fades into winter, the sports scene also experiences a shift. Fall favorites like football and soccer have wrapped up, and many athletes enjoy a bit of well-earned rest from competition until mid-winter when sports like baseball and golf return. However, while many folks were taking post-Thanksgiving naps this past week, the UC Davis basketball team was hard at work in the Pavilion.
UC Davis vs. Utah State (W, 77-70 ot)
The Aggies’ victory on Wednesday against Utah State at the Pavilion moved their record to 4-0, their best since 1999-2000.
It was far from an easy win for UC Davis. Going into halftime, the Aggies trailed by two points, posting a score of 29-27. At the beginning of the second half, junior forward Josh Fox began an 11-0 run for the Aggies by nailing a layup with 18:02 left in the game. Fox scored six of these points to contribute to a career high of 23 points in the game. After taking a 42-31 lead with 15:34 on the clock, a strong play for the rest of the game by Utah State gave them a three-point lead with just five seconds left to play.
With the buzzer winding down, senior guard Tyler Les hit a 25-foot three pointer which put the game into overtime. Junior forward J.T. Adenrele scored the first four points of the overtime, and senior guard Corey Hawkins’ final four points solidified the Aggies’ victory.
Notably, senior guard/forward Josh Ritchart’s 14-point contribution made him just the 21st player in UC Davis history to score 1,000 career points.
UC Davis vs. Utah Valley (W, 64-43)
The Aggies swept the competition on Saturday against Utah Valley in the Pavilion, posting an impressive 64-43 win. UC Davis held the lead from start to finish, with the Wolverines never sniffing the lead.
Beginning the game with a 16-point unanswered scoring run, the Aggies set a fierce tone early on that they maintained throughout the game. Hawkins led the Aggies with 18 points. Also scoring in double figures were junior forwards Fox (No. 12) and Adenrele (No. 11). Hawkins met the 100 career steal mark, managing three of UC Davis’ nine steals for this game. The Aggies’ 51.9 field goal percentage crushed that of the Wolverines’, who shot at a 29.4 percent clip.
The Aggies also showed their strength in shooting down low, defeating UVU in the paint by 36-16.
The Aggies’ victory brought their season record to 5-0, a feat that has not been managed by UC Davis since 1952. The team will look to continue that streak during another exciting home game on Wednesday against San Jose State.
Graphic by Andrew Li