Oct. 30, 2012
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LOS ANGELES -- Sophomores Chase Flint and Bruce English were off and running early and often as they paced LMU's defense to 21 steals and a 30-6 edge in points off turnovers as the Lions claimed a 75-52 win over Point Loma Nazarene in an exhibition contest at Gersten Pavilion Tuesday night.
The newcomer Flint had seven steals off the bench and the second-year sophomore English added five steals with nine points and two assists in the start.
"Our defense did do a good job tonight, getting 21 steals, 12 from Bruce and Chase," said Head Coach Max Good. "One of the best plays in my five years here had Bruce diving for a loose ball, Anthony Ireland diving for a loose ball and Chase diving for a loose ball, getting it to Ashley Hamilton for a dunk. That is how we need to play."
Hamilton had a monster night, scoring 19 points to lead all scorers, adding 13 rebounds for a double-double. He also had four steals, three assists and a block while going 7-for-10 from the field. Ireland had 15 points, four assists and a steal in 27 minutes.
"We played gritty, tough and ugly but got a pretty result at the end," said Good. "While our defense did alright, our defensive rebounding was awful and we won't be able to get away with that as this season gets going." The Lions were out rebounded 45-39 on the night.
Junior Godwin Okonji also had a double-double for the Lions, going for 11 points with 10 rebounds, hitting 9-for-10 form the charity stripe. LMU was the top free throw shooting team in the West Coast Conference a year ago, and started where they left off hitting 84.4 percent on the night (27-for-32).
The Lions used nine first half steals to create 12 Point Loma turnovers to build a 48-21 lead at the break. The Lions outscored the Sea Lions 17-0 in points off turnovers in the first half.
LMU will open their season on Friday, Nov. 9 when they host Pacifica at Gersten Pavilion with tip-off set for 7 p.m. The Lions will then travel to face SMU on Sunday, Nov. 11 to finish the opening weekend of play. Season tickets are still available, including special Friends and Family pricing. Visit the Ticket Homepage for more information.
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