UC Davis freshman guard Siler Schneider called his last-second, game-winning shot against Cal State Northridge last Thursday “a steppingstone.”
Aggies coach Jim Les said to learn how to win “sometimes you have to go through some adversity and setbacks.”
Schneider’s corner three-pointer with 1.7 seconds left beat the Matadors 63-62 in a Big West Conference game at the Pavilion that the Aggies led for only 47 seconds. It was the Aggies’ second win in 10 games and their first Big West win this season.
UCD, which has won nine in a row against Big West teams at home, hopes that good fortunate continues Thursday when the Aggies (6-10, 1-2) host UC Riverside (10-10, 1-3).
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The Highlanders also are coming off a critical win, 75-72 over Northridge on Saturday to end a five-game losing streak. Riverside was led by Jaylen Bland’s 24 points, including seven three-pointers. The 6-foot-3 senior guard leads Division I with 76 three-pointers.
The Aggies will have another test Saturday against Hawaii (15-2, 4-0). The Rainbow Warriors are off to their best start in 14 years under first-year coach Eran Ganot.
Demps misses fourth game – Sac State men’s coach Brian Katz knew good fortune would eventually run out. The Hornets (8-8, 1-4) have had an impressive run of good health in recent years – until this season.
The Hornets have been without a veteran starter in six of their past seven games, with senior point guard Cody Demps absent the past four. Sac State lost three of those four, including Saturday’s 85-74 setback to conference power Weber State that ended the Hornets’ 11-game conference winning streak at the Nest.
The silver lining can be that we are developing some other guys. When he comes back, then we’ll be that much better.
Brian Katz, Sacramento State men’s basketball coach, on the injury absence of senior leader Cody Demps
Demps had streaks of 75 consecutive starts and 104 consecutive games before a quad injury sidelined him after eight minutes in the conference season opener at Portland State.
Katz is unsure if the former Pleasant Grove High School star will be healthy enough to play Saturday at home against Portland State (6-10, 2-3).
“He’s a tremendous player and wonderful kid and we obviously miss him,” Katz said. “... The silver lining can be that we are developing some other guys. When he comes back, then we’ll be that much better.”
Sophomores Justin Strings and Marcus Graves have helped fill the void from Demps’ absence.
Strings, who leads the Hornets with 14 points per game, scored a career-high 23 and had 11 rebounds against Weber State. And Strings, 6-6, held Joel Bolomboy, a 6-9 NBA prospect, to 19 points.
Graves, a 6-foot guard who averages 13.4 points, also had 23 points against Weber State.
Road warriors – The UC Davis women (10-6, 3-0), who play at UC Santa Barbara (6-12, 3-1) on Thursday and Cal Poly (9-7, 2-1) on Saturday, are 6-1 on the road this season, but what pleases Aggies coach Jennifer Gross more is how her team has played at the Pavilion, where it has been inconsistent in recent seasons.
We’re trying to get back to the tradition we’ve had in this building, that you better bring it if you are going to beat us on our home floor.
Jennifer Gross, UC Davis women’s basketball coach
After losing three of its five nonconference home games, UCD beat Hawaii on Jan. 9 and UC Irvine on Jan. 14.
The victory over the Anteaters was part of a doubleheader with the men’s team that brought in a sizable weeknight crowd announced at 2,498.
“We’re trying to get back to the tradition we’ve had in this building, that you better bring it if you are going to beat us on our home floor,” Gross said. “When you (win), you are creating a pretty amazing atmosphere and fans will follow. They want to come and see you play well.”