Men's basketball rebounds after Friday loss, defeats UC Davis

Junior guard Edric Dennis dribbles past a University of California, Davis defender Nov. 18 at College Park Center. Dennis scored 11 points against the Aggies.

Led by hustle, the men’s basketball team (3-1) bounced back from Friday’s loss to defeat the University of California, Davis 68-59 Sunday afternoon at the College Park Center.

“Our hustle won us the game,” head coach Chris Ogden said. “Size does not matter. Eventually our speed won out and our effort and our mindset won out.”

The Mavericks suffered their first loss of the season Friday night against Texas A&M University Corpus Christi. The UC Davis Aggies entered the game with the momentum on their side, as they’d come off a win against the Islanders the night before. With that in mind, Ogden said the win was huge for the team.

“We weren’t happy with the way we played. I was not happy, I was angry,” Ogden said looking back on the loss. “We came back last night and we flipped the page, started concentrating on UC Davis.”

The game started as a back-and-forth battle, each team exchanging shots right after the other to keep it close. While the Aggies may have gotten off slow, a 10-0 run allowed them to jump ahead 14-10 within the first seven minutes.

With it being a close game, tension arose on the court. Players eyed each other, got face-to-face after slam dunks and big plays — but it’s all part of the game when you’re hungry for a win, junior guard Tiandre Jackson-Young said.

“There’s supposed to be tension. We out there playing hard,” Jackson-Young said. “We trying to win, we out there fighting. This is basketball and we love it.”

It was foul trouble that allowed the Mavericks to slightly pull away with a lead, but the Aggies were consistent, allowing no more than a four-point lead from then on until the three-minute mark.

With the help of junior guards Brian Warren and DJ Bryant, the Mavericks began to heat up beyond the arc, netting three back-to-back 3-pointers on their way to an 11-0 run.

After not scoring for almost five minutes, a slam dunk gave the Aggies some late momentum, but the Mavericks knocked down a couple of shots in the final seconds to take a 38-30 lead heading into the break.

Trailing by eight, UC Davis was jump started by senior guard Siler Schneider entering the second half. Schneider was responsible for six of the team's first eight points in the second half, keeping the Aggies in the game, while UTA piled on the shots.

For a short time, foul trouble worked in favor of the Mavericks, allowing them to push their advantage to double digits. UC Davis then responded with an 8-0 run off 3-pointers and free throws to make it a two-point game.

Battling it out on the free throw line, UTA managed to keep its advantaged at a minimum of four points down to the last seconds of the game. Warren then sunk four consecutive free throws to put the game out of reach for UC Davis, securing the win for UTA.

The Mavericks, who shot 85.7 percent from the line, had four players score in double digits. Leading the pack, Warren netted 18 points while junior guard Radshad Davis followed behind with 12 points.

Junior guard Edric Dennis and Bryant ended the game with 11 points each. Dennis grabbed eight boards, just a few behind Jackson-Young, who snagged 11. UTA out-rebounded UC Davis 33-29.

After a four-game home stretch, the Mavericks hit the road for the first time this season to face the University of Indiana at 6 p.m. Tuesday in Bloomington, Indiana.

Not having home court advantage will be different, but Jackson-Young said the team will have something close on its side.

“We got each other,” he said. “That’s all we need.”

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