Feb. 8, 2002
Los Angeles, CA (February 8, 2002) - The Loyola Marymount University (LMU) men's basketball team struggled from the beginning in a 62-44 defeat to Saint Mary's in a West Coast Conference game on Friday night at Gersten Pavilion.
The Lions (9-14, 2-7) struggles from the field continued as they finished hitting just 34 percent for the game. The shooting woes extended the Lion's season-high losing streak to six. The Gaels (7-15, 2-7) won back-to-back conference games for the first time since 1998, as they finished shooting 48 percent from the field, including 65.2 percent in the first half.
"Have to give credit to Saint Mary's," said Head Coach Steve Aggers. "They were well coached, worked hard and were clearly the aggressor tonight. We were not prepared to play tonight. I take full responsibility for that. I don't know the answers at this point."
In addition to the shooting, the Gaels turned the game in their favor on the glass. They finished the game outrebounding the Lions 46 to 21, including 13 offensive rebounds. Sophomore Chase Poole led the Gaels with seven rebounds in the first half and finished with a double-double, grabbing 12 rebounds and scoring 14 points.
"Credit to their performance," said Aggers. "They went up 12 to 2 and set the tone. You can't play catch up to a team that control the tempo like Saint Mary's did tonight."
Sophomore Kent Dennis led the Lions with 15 points but had no support as the Lions failed to score more than 64 points for the fifth time in the last six games.
Saint Mary's jumped out to a 39-21 lead as the Lions started the game 0-for-10 from the field in the first nine minutes. Poole had seven first half points and junior Ross Benson had nine of his ten points in the first half.
LMU would cut the lead to 12 points, 49-37, on a lay-up by senior Greg Lakey with 11:26 remaining. However, LMU would score just seven points the rest of the way as Saint Mary's would close the game on a13-7 run. Lakey would finish tying a career-high with 11 rebounds.
It was the lowest total points for the Lions since they scored just 38 against San Diego on Jan. 14, 2000. "We have too much pride and respect for the program to play like that. We played with passion against the top team in the conference a week ago but came out flat," said Aggers.
The Lions will take on San Francisco on Saturday, Feb. 9 at 7:05 p.m. in Homecoming.