Sophomore Evan Payne had a breakout freshman season, and he is being asked to grow quickly into the leader of the Lions.
At just under seven-feet Patson Siame looms large no matter the country.
From two different countries, Spain made them teammates for the first time, now both find themselves back in Spain with the Lions.
Two months ago, Joshua Spiers had left his home country of Australia. Since, it has been a whirlwind, including day five in Spain.
Playing internationally is nothing new for junior Marin Mornar as he and the Lions remain focused on one thing in Spain - basketball.
As a freshman, Evan Payne went on to set school records, scoring more than any other freshman in LMU history. As a sophomore, he is being challenged to be a consistent leader, one who shows up at the highest level every day in every aspect of leading a team. And he is excited for the chance.
Showing its reach across the globe, LMU continued its tour while sending back some well wishes as they spent their final day in Madrid before flying to Barcelona on Sunday morning. The Lions had a full pre game practice, followed by the coaches participating in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. They then took on the Angola National Team, who is participating in the upcoming FIBA World Championships in Spain.
Playing together for the first time, the Lions overcame two double-digit deficits, different rules within the international game, differences in how officials call games, a gym with no air conditioning, foul trouble and playing 5,000 miles from home to earn a 90-85 victory in overtime.
WCC First Round Postgame Press Conferences
The 2014 West Coast Conference Basketball Championships will descend on Las Vegas, Nev., for the sixth consecutive season and the LMU basketball programs will begin play on Thursday at the Orleans Arena.
Day 10 for LMU men's basketball in Barcelona Spain, a 97-52 win for the Lions over mixed Barcelona team.
LMU's ninth day in spain featured a trip to Camp Nou, home of FC Barcelona.
Game three for LMU's 2014 Spain Tour, a 97-75 win over a mixed all-star team from Barcelona, Spain.
Day six featured the second game, this one coming against the Angola National Team.
Photos from the Lions full day, including tour of Madrid.
BRIEFLY... Evan Payne is in his second season of college basketball for LMU in 2014-15... set the LMU freshman record with 497 points in his first season in 2013-14, ranking 7th in the WCC at 15.5 points per game... was named WCC All-Freshman...
HONORS... 2014 WCC All-Freshman...
RECORDS... LMU freshman records in 2013-14: 1st in points (497), 1st in points per game (15.5), 4th for points in a game (27, twice), 4th in steals (42)...
HIGHLIGHTS AT LMU...
HIGH SCHOOL... Attended Kingdom Christian Academy in Columbus, Georgia in 2012-13... attended Walsh Jesuit High School in Ohio before attending Kingdom Prep... At Kingdom, he was part of a program that won back-to-back NACA Division III National Championships, leading the Mighty Lions to the Bull City Classic Championship in Durham, NC in December of 2012... Payne was an Associated Press Division II All-Ohio selection his final season at Walsh and the All-Northeast Ohio Inland District Player of the Year. He averaged 24.5 points in the regular season and contributed four rebounds, four assists, three steals and two blocks per game... Payne's most memorable basket in his final season in Ohio came when he launched an off-balance 3-pointer from just beyond mid-court with less than two seconds to go in overtime to defeat Buchtel 63-60 in a Division II district final. Payne grabbed a rebound, then dribbled to his right and proceeded up the court to his left when he shot the ball off the backboard and through the net to give him 18 points... he scored 16 points in Walsh's 63-51 loss to eventual state champion St. V-M in a regional semifinal... set the Walsh single-game record for scoring, twice reaching 37 points. His first 37-point game came against visiting Hoban in a 71-66 win on Jan. 22, 2010 and his second 37-point game came against visiting Cleveland St. Ignatius in a 65-58 win on Feb. 6, 2011.
PERSONAL... Kent Evan Payne was born on Aug., 6, 1993 in Akron, Ohio. He is the son of Ulonda and Kent Payne... He has one sister and one brother... an undeclared Liberal Arts major.