Tutt Helps Santa Barbara Shoot Down Titans


Raymond Tutt came to UC Santa Barbara’s rescue just in time Thursday night.

Tutt connected on consecutive three-point shots, the second with 2 1/2 minutes left, to break up a tight game and lead the Gauchos to an 87-81 Big West Conference victory over Cal State Fullerton in front of 1,036 in Titan Gym.

The victory was the first on the road in seven games this season for Santa Barbara (6-11, 3-4 in conference), and only the second for the Gauchos in their last 22 games away from home over three seasons.

It was the third Big West loss in three conference games at home for the Titans (7-10, 2-5).


“Tutt stepped up and made two big plays for them, and we didn’t have the answers,” Titan Coach Bob Hawking said.

Tutt, held to four points in the first half, came back with 16 in the second half. Tutt made the most of his opportunities, going seven of 10 from the field. Kealon Wallace had 19 points and B.J. Bunton 18 in a balanced effort for the Gauchos.

Santa Barbara made 22 of 24 free throws, including 22 in a row before Bunton missed two with seven seconds left. That string surpassed the school record of 18 consecutive free throws against Pepperdine in 1988. Fullerton was 16 of 31 at the line.

Chris Dade scored 15 of Fullerton’s first 19 points, but didn’t score again in the first half, and finished with 21. Ike Harmon also had 21 for the Titans with Chris St. Clair getting 14.

Dade, who has been below par physically since having four teeth pulled early last week, wilted after the strong start.

“I was tired,” said Dade, who missed one game last week and played on a limited basis in another. “I couldn’t eat much at all last week, and I lost some weight. I felt weak in the second half.”


Dade did a good job on defense in the first half against Tutt, holding him to only four shots, but it took its toll on Dade physically.

“We had to play Dade extended minutes, but he was pushing the envelope after limited practice the last two weeks,” Hawking said.

Dade’s strong early play led the Titans to 30-20 lead, but Santa Barbara came back to tie the score at 36-36, and the first half ended in a 38-38 tie.

With the score tied at 67 with less than four minutes left, Tutt hit the first of his three-point baskets. His second came after Mark Richardson missed two free throws and left the Titans in deep trouble.

“I knew I had to step it up in the second half,” Tutt said. “I was kind of going with the flow in the first half. Every team plays me close because they know I can shoot from outside. It felt good to win one away from home. When I made that first three-point shot, I thought: We’re going to win this game.”

Santa Barbara’s big advantage at the free-throw line wasn’t all that favored the Gauchos. Fullerton also was outrebounded, 42-29, and outshot from the field. Santa Barbara shot 64% from the floor in the second half and finished at 54.4% compared to 43.9% for the Titans. “Several key numbers went against us,” Hawking said.


The Gauchos switched from a man-to-man defense to a zone, and it was effective, especially in the second half.

“They haven’t used that much zone this season,” Hawking said. “It didn’t figure to be a key strategy because we’ve attacked zones all year long, but we were stagnant against the zone for a while.”

Despite the disappointing loss, Hawking said he thinks his team will recover.

“This team won’t give up,” Hawking said. “There are still a lot of Western Division games left in the conference. We just need to play better. That’s the bottom line.”