SANTA CRUZ (11-19) – The Banana Slugs played their second game in as many days as they took on NCCAA member LIFE Pacific College at Kaiser Permanente Arena. The Banana Slugs came back from a three-point deficit at halftime to defeat the Warriors 72-60.
In their last game, the Banana Slugs lost 73-62 to California Lutheran University in Santa Cruz yesterday while LIFE Pacific defeated UC Merced 82-74 yesterday in Merced.
In the first half, the Banana Slugs would gain their largest lead of the first half at three on two occasions; the second occasion at 12-9 on a layup by Will Crain with 13:37 left in the half. The Warriors would take the lead, at 16-14, on a Blake Terry layup with 10:56 left in the half. The largest lead of the ballgame for the Warriors was eight on two occasions; the second occasion at 33-25 on a Trent Rowser tip in with 2:02 left in the half. The Banana Slugs would score the final five points of the half as the Warriors led 33-30 at the halftime break.
In the second half, the Banana Slugs would get back into the ballgame. With 12:36 left in the game, the Banana Slugs took the lead for good on a Vinay Narayanam three pointer, which made the score 47-44. The Banana Slugs would gain a double digit lead, at 67-56, on a Corey Cilia layup with 4:21 left in the game. The Banana Slugs would gain their largest lead of the game at thirteen, at 71-58, on a Kyle Creighton jumper with 3:18 left. The Banana Slugs would win 72-60 for their first home win of the season.
Cilia had a game high twenty points to lead the Banana Slugs in the win. Terry had sixteen points for the Warriors. Narayanam had twelve points and Crain and Creighton both had eleven points for the Banana Slugs in the win. Ramez Michail had fifteen and Mark Eden had twelve for the Warriors.
The Banana Slugs shot 47.3% (26-55) from the field, 40% (8-20) from the three-point line and was 70.6% (12-17) from the free throw line. The Warriors shot 33.3% (20-60) from the field, 31% (9-29) from the three-point line and 91.7% (11-12) from the foul line. UC Santa Cruz's defense forced fourteen turnovers by the Warriors scoring nineteen points off the turnovers while the Warriors' defense forced the same number of turnovers and scored the same amount of points off the turnovers. UC Santa Cruz outrebounded LIFE Pacific 37-35 while the Banana Slugs had seventeen more points off the bench (22-5) than did the Warriors.
The next game for the Banana Slugs is tomorrow as they take on Linfield College at Kaiser Permanente Arena to wrap up the 2016 Mission Inn Classic. Tip off is set for 2 pm.