DAVIS, Calif. – Senior communication major TJ Shorts II and junior communication major Matt Neufeld led all scorers with 17 points in Saturday’s non-conference game at the Pavilion, junior communication major Rogers Printup came off the bench to score a season-high 13 points on 5 of 7 shooting overall, and freshman guard Caleb Fuller scored a career-high 12 points to help UC Davis defeat William Jessup, 83-65, in the final home game of 2018.
UC Davis will now enter Saturday’s 4 p.m. game at Arizona, televised by the Pac-12 Networks, with a 3-7 record. That matchup is the first of three straight on the road until the Aggies return home on Jan. 5 for its final Big West tune-up. After the holidays, UC Davis will face Loyola Marymount and USC on their home courts before returning to Northern California.
In addition to connecting on 8 of 11 shots from the field, Shorts II was one of two Aggies who collected a team-high three of UC Davis’ season-high 18 assists. Senior economics major Garrison Goode was the other, he set a new season high with that individual total.
Neufeld’s 17 points, on 5 of 7 shooting from the floor and 7 of 9 at the stripe, are new career highs, as was his three blocks and three steals.
By hitting three of his five baskets from three Printup was responsible for a season-high 13 of the Aggies’ 62 bench points, with all of his points earned after halftime.
UC Davis outscored the Warriors in the paint by a 44-30 margin, scored 23 points off its opponents’ 23 turnovers and came two points shy of doubling its opponent’s second-half point total (52-27).
“I had a defensive mindset to be aggressive, but when I had the looks, I felt confident to take that those shots,” said Printup. “Even if all my team needed was defensive stops or rebounds, I wanted to do whatever we needed to win.”
“I thought he gave us a lift defensively, first, before he started knocking down shots,” said head coach Jim Les regarding Printup’s performance off the bench. “I just believe that is how this works: If you work hard on defense first, the ball will find the basket.
“He was able to create deflections, make some tough plays on defense and come up with rebounds, and lo and behind, the ball found its way through the net,” Les added.
Even though William Jessup jumped out to an early lead, thanks to its success at the free throw line — it hit 14 of 15 before halftime, and only connected on 5 of 10 attempts afterwards — it was the Aggies’ overall shooting that helped it quickly build a sizable lead.
At one point of the second half, UC Davis hit 7 of 7 from the floor and enjoyed an 11-0 scoring run to earn another home victory.
Overall, the Aggies shot .556 overall (30-for-54), .421 from three (8-for-19) and .789 from the line (15-for-19). Conversely, the Warriors shot .389 (21-for-54), .222 (4-for-18) and 19-for-25 (.760) respectively.