The UC Santa Barbara Gauchos (13-5, 2-2 BigWst) can continue a nine-game home winning streak when they square off with the UC Irvine Anteaters (8-13, 3-2 BigWst) at Thunderdome. UC Santa Barbara is a 7-point favorite on the opening line, while the games Over/Under (O/U) opened at 142 points. Tip-off is set for 10 p.m. ET on Saturday, January 20, 2018.
UC Irvine Anteaters vs. UC Santa Barbara Gauchos ATS Preview
In the Anteaters last matchup, they defeated the Cal Poly Mustangs, 80-73. Tommy Rutherford was UC Irvine’s high scorer with 20 points on 7-for-10 shooting. The Anteaters held the Mustangs to an offensive rebounding percentage of 16.2 (below their season average of 26.5) and had an effective field goal percentage of 0.555 (above their season average of 0.497).
The Gauchos hope to keep it rolling after thoroughly outplaying the Cal State Fullerton Titans in their last game, 83-64. With 24 points on 10-for-15 shooting, Max Heidegger was the top scorer from either team. UC Santa Barbara dominated nearly every facet of the game. They had a turnover percentage of 11.0 (better than their season average of 14.2) and an offensive rebounding percentage of 31.0 (above their season average of 29.1). For those same stats, Cal State Fullerton was 21.4 and 25.9, respectively.
UC Santa Barbara should be expected to protect the ball well in this contest. UC Santa Barbara ranks 24th in the NCAA at avoiding errors (turnover percentage of 16.0 percent), while UC Irvine forces the 15th-fewest turnovers (15.6 percent).
Eyassu Worku has taken his game to another level over the last five games for UC Irvine, averaging 16.4 points and 1.2 steals per game.
This is the first time these teams will clash this year, after the Anteaters won both meetings last season. In the most recent contest, UC Irvine won 64-47. The Anteaters played a nearly flawless game. They had a phenomenal offensive rebounding percentage of 37.8 and an effective field goal percentage of 0.467. For those same stats, the Gauchos put up marks of 17.9 and 0.373, respectively.
UC Irvine Anteaters vs. UC Santa Barbara Gauchos Odds Prediction
Predictions: SU Winner – UC Irvine, ATS Winner – UC Irvine, O/U – Under
- The Anteaters are 37th in the nation with 2.7 blocks allowed per game while the Gauchos are 43rd with 2.8 blocks allowed per game.
- UC Irvine averages 41.2 rebounds per game, which ranks seventh in the NCAA. UC Santa Barbara ranks 94th in rebounds allowed per game (33.9).
- The Gauchos rank second in steals allowed per game (4.1) while the Anteaters rank 61st (5.7).
- UC Santa Barbara ranks 61st in assists per game (15.5) while UC Irvine ranks 83rd in assists allowed per game (12.6).
- The Gauchos average margin of victory in their last five games has been 11.4, up from 7.2 for the season.
- During their last five games, the Anteaters have scored an average of 70.8 points per game (0.0 below their season average) and allowed an average of 66.2 points per game (4.9 below their season average).