Men's hoops: Half and half in Texas

Nathan Mohri faces a challenger from the University of Dallas.
Jacob Moore (No. 44) attempts a jump hook in the game vs. Chapman. (Photos by Ken Reeves)

The Slug men's basketball team recently traveled to Irving, Texas, for a two-game tournament, with split results.

The Slugs faced the University of Dallas on January 21 in front of a loud and raucous home crowd but were able to slip away with a 64-61 victory to run their record to 7-10 for the season.

The victory was anything by easy as the Crusaders of Dallas started off strong, scoring the first 6 points of the game before Brent Jacobs's long outlet pass to Ryan Matsuoka for a lay-up finally put the Slugs on the board just under 2 minutes into the game.

The Slugs led 36 to 29 at half-time, but the second half was a different story. Ross Davidson, Dallas's 6'7" freshman from California, made 9 out of 10 free throws and scored 19 more points.

UCSC had a 3-point lead with 11 seconds left in the game. The Crusaders had two 3-point attempts in those last 11 seconds but could not sink the shots.

Slugs Darrin Lew scored a team high of 12 points; Jacob Moore dropped in 10; Brent Jacobs had a team high 7 rebounds and 4 assists.

Day two of the Dallas tournament--January 22--saw two familiar opponents from California battling it out on the hardwood at the University of Dallas. Eventually, Chapman would once again be able to pull away from Santa Cruz over the last 8 minutes to extend a 2-point lead to a hard-fought 63-52 victory.

Chapman jumped out to a 4-0 lead before Darrin Lew pulled up and hit a 3-pointer 4 minutes into the game. The halftime score was 32-24 Chapman.

In the second half, Ryan Matsuoka came alive for the Slugs, scoring 8 points, allowing the Slugs to hang around with the nationally ranked Cougars.

After an offensive foul by Chapman, the Slugs had the ball and a chance to cut the lead to 4 with just under 1 minute to go. A Santa Cruz missed jumper forced the Slugs into foul mode in order to stop the clock. Chapman proved solid from the line, hitting 5 of 6 over the last 50 seconds of the game while the Slugs were unable to score during that same time period.

"We've put a chink in their armor, and some day we are going to break through. I thought we played them even the last two games--hopefully we get a third chance in the postseason playoffs," said Coach Gordon Johnson.

The Slugs' record is now 7 wins and 11 losses overall, and 5-9 against NCAA Division III schools.

Next up:

• Bethany College in Scotts Valley at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, January 27.

• Home game against Pacifica University of Riverside at 7 p.m. Saturday, January 29. 

More information: Slug Athletics