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Tuesday, March 26 , 2019, 12:46 pm | Partly Cloudy 62º

Sports: A Noozhawk Partnership with Santa Barbara Athletic Round Table, The Lab, and American Riviera Bank
College Basketball

UCSB Women Put Together Solid Performance to Beat UC Irvine

For the second straight Saturday, the UC Santa Barbara women's basketball team showed its resilience, bouncing back from a tough loss earlier in the week to pick up a win over a top-three Big West team.

This time, it was second-place UC Irvine that the Gauchos were able to take down at home, besting the Anteaters 71-52 behind 21 points from Coco Miller and 20 from Danae Miller.

The win puts the Gauchos at 6-18 overall and 3-8 in Big West play. Irvine, which entered Saturday with the highest overall winning percentage in the conference, drops to 16-6 overall, 6-4 Big West.

"We did a good job of never letting them get in a good rhythm, which was important early because that's what got us in trouble at their place," said UCSB coach Bonnie Henrickson. "Both teams were in foul trouble but I thought that the players managed that effectively and confidently."

The backcourt duo of Coco and Danae Miller would be the stars of the second half, as UCSB grew its lead to as high as 17 points late in the third. Coco would put up 18 of her team-high 21 points in the second half alone on 6-of-7 shooting.

In the fourth, both Millers would combine for 18 of UCSB's 20 points. Coco finished 7-of-13 from the field. Danae meanwhile never missed a shot, going a perfect 5-for-5 from the field and 8-for-8 from the free throw line. She also added five rebounds and game-highs of five assists and four steals in 39 minutes.

"This was Danae's best game of the year. I'm really proud of how confidently and aggressively she played," added Henrickson.

Playing some of their most inspired basketball on both ends, Santa Barbara would get out on the break often in the second half. Their 71 points would set a new conference season-high in the scoring department, topping their previous high of 68, set in their first meeting with UCI back in late January.

Active and energetic on defense, the Gauchos would hold Irvine to just 52 points, the second-fewest UCSB has allowed during Big West play. The Gauchos also set new opponent season-lows in both field goal percentage (.321) and three-point percentage (.143).

Santa Barbara will head back on the road next week, traveling to Cal State Fullerton on Thursday, Feb. 21 and Long Beach State on Saturday.

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