PASADENA (12-14) UC Santa Cruz overcame a 15 point deficit in the second half to defeat Caltech 63-60 (2-4). After losing to the Beavers by 3 on November 17th in double OT, the Slugs would not let their challenging first half lead to a repeat of their last meeting.
UC Santa Cruz started the game with a 15-10 lead, six points each from Patrick Ramos and Avri Finch, plus three from Ryan Silva. But Caltech quickly picked their heads up. Noah Barnes was 3-5 with 9, and Marcus Gee added 7, as the Beavers responded with a 24-10 run over the Slugs to end the half.
The second half was a new game for the banana Slugs, who was able to outscore Caltech 39-26. When Finch was fouled two different times within the first two minutes, knocking down all four free throws, the Slugs were able to turn the game around. Ramos and Finch both contributed 12 points each in the second half, and Treyson Keating came off the bench boarding seven key rebounds.
Finch scored the go-ahead basket with 18 seconds left to give UCSC the lead back at 61-60, while Keating iced it with two free-throws with seven seconds left as UC Santa Cruz finished strong to earn another win, now with a 5-5 record on the season.
Ramos and Finch both scored game-highs of 18 points. Finch dominated the boards with 12 and Keating added 9 rebounds as well. Starters Simon Mueller-Landsvik and Silva were next leading scores for the Slugs with 8 a piece.
UC Santa Cruz will continue their roadtrip and play their second meeting of the season against University of Redlands this Monday, December 16th.