This blog is written by Ray Ferrari, a sophomore Communication Studies major from Eugene, Ore. His weekly recap of LMU Athletics will be posted here every Monday allowing for a quick glance at the week that was in Lion Sports.
While most students were at home celebrating Thanksgiving and relaxing over the break with their families, the basketball teams had work to do, both travelling outside the continental U.S. for holiday tournaments. But the most exciting news of the week for Lion Sports came calling Sunday afternoon when the volleyball team received a bid to the NCAA tournament.
After finishing the season on a loss at San Francisco that sent the volleyball team to a mere 8-8 record in the conference, most of the LMU community gave up on hopes of postseason play. But the NCAA saw the WCC as one of the premier conferences in the nation and invited a record-tying six teams into the 64-team field. This will be the first LMU volleyball team in the field since 2005 and first under third-year head coach Tom Black. The Lions will head back to Northern California this week for the Palo Alto regional, where they will face Western Kentucky (32-3) on Friday.
The men's basketball team went to the Last Frontier over the break for the Great Alaska shootout in Anchorage. On national television Thursday night, the Lions took on Oral Roberts. After a tight first half, ORU took control late to drop the Lions 75-66. In the consolation game Friday, LMU got back on track with an easy win over Texas State 78-63. And in the consolation final against host Alaska-Anchorage, nothing would drop for the Lions as they shot under 27 percent from the field en route to a 83-77 loss.
The women's team found a bit warmer weather than the sub-freezing temperatures in Alaska on their trip to the Bahamas for two games, but was just as cold on the floor. The Lions came out slow in their first game, shooting just 22 percent from the field in a low-scoring 55-33 loss to Iowa State Friday. LMU was able to salvage the trip in a thrilling 75-74 victory over Tulsa on Saturday in which they overcame a 20-point deficit on their way to their first road win of the year.