MORAGA, Calif. - The Saint Mary's women's basketball team (5-2) travels to UC Davis on Thursday to take on the Aggies (2-3) at 7:00 p.m. at The Pavilion. The Gaels enter the contest having won four consecutive games, including last week's road sweep at Cal Poly and UC Santa Barbara.
The all-time series between Saint Mary's and UC Davis is tied at 5-5, including last year's 75-58 SMC win in McKeon Pavilion. Prior to the SMC win, the Aggies had won four consecutive meetings against the Gaels. SMC has lost its last two match-ups with the Aggies in Davis, as the Gaels lost in on December 1, 2010 and December 17, 2007 at UCD.
Last week the Gaels defeated a couple of the Big West's top teams, according to the Big West Preseason Poll. In SMC's 70-67 win over Cal Poly, the Gaels were down by as many as 15 points in the second half but chipped away and pulled out the victory. Danielle Mauldin had a double-double with 15 points and a career-high 17 rebounds. Jackie Nared led the Gaels with 21 points.
Saint Mary's also won a defensive battle on Saturday at UC Santa Barbara. The Gaels defense won the final few minutes to earn the 49-39 victory. Mauldin recorded her fourth double-double of the year with 12 points and 13 rebounds. Mia Greco scored a career-high 12 points, including going 6-for-6 from the free-throw line.
Nared leads the Gaels with 18.7 points per game and adds 9.4 rebounds per game. Mauldin averages 13.0 ppg and 11.3 rpg. The Gaels get to the free-throw line more than twice their opponents and shoot 75.6 percent as a team from the charity stripe. The Gaels also out-rebound their opponents by over nine rebounds per game.
The Aggies enter the week at 2-3 with wins over Navy and Houston Baptist. UC Davis has also faced a pair of West Coast Conference schools in Pepperdine (L, 83-68) and San Francisco (L, 72-65). Last week UCD faced No. 1 Stanford and lost 87-38.
UC Davis is led by Sydnee Fipps who averages 20.2 points per game. Cortney French adds 15.0 ppg while both shoot over 40 percent from three-point range. As a team, the Aggies shoot the three ball well, converting on 34.3 percent, having made 35 three-pointers this year in five games.