Leading by one at halftime, the Huskies clamped down defensively in the second half, holding the Aggies to just 29 percent (9-of-31) shooting after the intermission.
Junior Eugene German added 14 points while sophomore Gairges Daow and Rod Henry-Hayes each chipped in 10 points.
“It was good to see four guys in double figures; tonight it was Levi Bradley, Eugene German, (Gairges) Daow and Rod Henry-Hayes. Rod Henry-Hayes really got us going in the first half.”
NIU (5-3) continued to shoot the ball well, connecting at 48.1 percent (25-of-52) from the floor, including 46.2 percent (6-of-13) from three; the Huskies came into the contest ranked sixth in the nation in field goal percentage.
A jump shot from senior Jaylen Key and a layup by Daow off a feed from junior Noah McCarty helped give the Huskies a five-point lead, 14-9, with 12:41 to play in the opening half.
The Huskie lead was still five, 19-14, until a 7-0 burst for UC Davis on a pair of triples from Damion Squire and a free throw by T.J. Shorts II, gave the Aggies a two-point lead with just over eight minutes to play in the opening half.
NIU answered with the next five as senior Lacey James pulled the Huskies even and Bradley scored the next three to give NIU a 24-21 lead with 6:23 left before the intermission.
Back-to-back triples helped give UC Davis a three-point lead, 32-29, but NIU answered right back with the next six on a teardrop from Henry-Hayes and a pair of baskets by McCarty. Shorts then made a layup with 14 seconds left in the half to trim the NIU lead to just one at the break, 35-34.
Five minutes into the second half, NIU led by a pair, 46-44, before a put-back by Daow and four-straight from German helped push the Huskie lead to 52-44 with 12:18 remaining.
UC Davis (2-7) then used a 7-2 burst to pull within three, 54-51, five of the seven points came at the free throw line for the Aggies. Bradley then answered with the next six as the NIU lead went reached nine, 60-51, with just under four minutes to play.
Following a basket by the Aggies, both Daow and Bradley converted old-fashioned three-points plays, sandwiched around a UC Davis free throw, as the lead reached a dozen and the Huskies put the game out of reach.
Shorts, last season’s Big West Player of the Year, scored a game-high 18 points to lead UC Davis; Joe Mooney was also in double figures with 16 for the Aggies.
NIU will return to action on Saturday afternoon, December 8, when the Huskies visit historic Hinkle Fieldhouse to take on Butler. Tipoff in Indianapolis is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. CT