Defense Can't Overcome Offensive Struggles
Men's basketball generates extra opportunities thanks to defense but can't overcome 29.5 percent shooting in regular season finale.
MALIBU, Calif. - LMU's defense generated 11 more shots than Pepperdine, forced them into 17 turnovers, had 17 offensive rebounds and scored 33 points thanks to those extra chances. However, it wasn't enough to overcome just 29.5 percent shooting as the Waves pulled away down the stretch for a 65-49 win in the final game of the regular season at Firestone Field House Saturday afternoon.
The Lions trailed by just two, 31-29, at the break and led most of the first half. However, they shot just 20.6 percent in the second half, going 0-for-12 from three, as the Waves (17-12, 10-8) used a 2-for-15 drought by the Lions (8-22. 4-14) to pull away.
"We had a good first half but we ran into the desert offensively," said Head Coach Mike Dunlap. "We have been prone to that and it bled into our defense down the stretch."
David Humphries led the Lions with his first career double-double, scoring 11 points with 10 rebounds. The Lions out-rebounded the Waves 41-38. Marin Mornar was the only other Lion in double figures with 10 points.
Stacy Davis led Pepperdine with 19 points and 11 rebounds. Jett Raines added 14 as the Waves hit 48 percent from the field, including a 6-for-13 clip from three (46.2 percent). The Lions hit 11-for-14 from the free throw line while Pepperdine went just 11-for-21.
LMU led most of the first half thanks to turnovers. The finished with 21 points off turnovers and scored 12 second chance points.
"We have many good things that we can take with us into Friday and the WCC tournament," said Dunlap. "We haven't had all of our pieces on the floor and we learned tonight that we can do a good job in trapping on defense. The uptempo pace really seemed to help us offensively, especially int he first half."
The Lions will open play in the 2015 WCC Tournament on Friday, March 6 as either the No. 9 seed at 6 pm, taking on the No. 8 seed or as the No. 10 seed, playing the No. 7 seed at 8 pm. Final seedings will be released following the conclusion of WCC play on Saturday.
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