Three-Game Road Swing Begins in Provo
Men's basketball will complete the season series with BYU on Saturday, Jan. 28.
|Date | Time:||Saturday, Jan. 28 | 6 pm (PT)|
|Where:||Marriott Center | Provo, Utah|
|GAME PREVIEW:||LMU Game Notes | BYU Game Notes|
|The Match-up:||LMU: ROSTER | SCHEDULE | STATS
BYU: ROSTER | SCHEDULE | STATS
|RADIO:||KXLU 88.9 FM | Listien Online|
|GameDay Info:||GAMEDAY CENTRAL | BUY TICKETS | COMING TO LMU|
PROVO, Utah - LMU men's basketball will begin the final leg of their current road-dominated stretch in West Coast Conference with a three-game road swing. It begins in Provo, Utah, as the Lions take on BYU Saturday, Jan. 28 at 6 pm (PT). The game can be seen on BYUtv and can be heard on KXLU 88.9 FM.
THE MATCH-UP Senior led LMU continues their season defined as the Cardiac Lions as they enter Saturday at 10-10 overall and 3-6 in the WCC. Six of their last 12 games have been decided by a point and ten of LMU's last 17 games have been decided in the last 10 seconds of the contest (record of 4-6). LMU has played 13 games decided by seven points or less, going 6-7 in those contests after the six-point win over Pacific on Thursday, Jan. 26. LMU is 3-3 in one-point games, 1-2 in three-point games, the five-point setback against BYU in the first meeting, the 79-73 win over the Tigers, and 1-1 in seven-point games.
BYU fell to 6-3 in WCC play and 15-7 overall with a 76-68 loss in Santa Clara on Thursday. The Marriott Center has been kind to the Cougars as they are 11-1 at home this season. They fell to 4-6 on the road with the setback to the Broncos. Eric Mika leads BYU and is second in the WCC at 20.5 ppg. NIck Emery and TJ Haws sit fifth and eight in the WCC with 53 and 46 three-pointers, respectively.
This will be the 16th overall meeting between the two programs and will complete the regular season series in WCC play. In the first meeting on New Year Eve Day, LMU led for over 36 minutes but the Cougars got hot late from three and earned an 81-76 come-from-behind victory. Back-to-back three-pointers by TJ Haws, the second coming with 36 seconds left, finished the Cougars come-back and helped erase an 18-point deficit. The Lions, who led by 18 with 2:32 to play in the first half and held a 10-point lead with 9:01 to play in the game, couldn't get the equalizer in the final seconds. Trevor Manuel led the Lions off the bench for the second straight game with 16 points and seven rebounds. Stefan Jovanovic had 12 points and Shamar Johnson had 10 in his return. Nick Emery, who finished 5-for-11 from three, and Haws, who hit 4-for-8 from long range, each had 20 to lead BYU. The starters scored all but five points for BYU (11-4, 2-0).
INSIDE THE LIONS The Lions are 10-10, 3-6 on the season after defeating Pacific, 79-73, on Thursday. It was the team's 13th game decided by seven points or less. Here is a look at some of the latest buzzer beaters from the Cardiac season for the Lions:
- Dec. 10 - LMU 69, CSUN 68 - Stefan Jovanovic hits a put-back with nine seconds remaining and Lions defense deflects shot at the buzzer for road win.
- Dec. 17 - LMU 91, UIW 90 (ot) - Down eight in second half, Lions hit 11 straight free throws to end regulation, and defense holds on two UIW shots at the buzzer.
- Dec. 19 - LMU 69, CSU 66 - LMU erases 10 point deficit in final nine minutes as Brandon Brown hits three-pointer with 0.9 seconds left for road win.
- Dec. 22 - UTA 80, LMU 77 - LMU trailed by 9 with 6:30 to play and a pair of three-pointers at buzzer don't fall.
- Dec. 31 - BYU 81, LMU 75 - LMU led by 10 with 9:01 to play but TJ Haws hit back-to-back three- pointers, the second coming with 36 seconds to play, gave the Cougars the 79-76 lead. LMU had a chance to tie with 10 seconds left but the shot was blocked.
- Jan. 5 - Pepperdine 71, LMU 70 - LMU led by seven with 7:54 to play but Waves hit put-back with 1.6 left for one-point win.
- Jan. 14 - LMU 79, Portland 78 - Down five with 55 seconds to play, the Lions forced back-to-back turnovers, got a jumper from Brandon Brown, an offensive put-back by Kelvin Amayo, the game-winner lay-up from Brown with five seconds left and a block by Shamar Johnson at the buzzer to pull out the win.
- Jan. 21 - Santa Clara 64, LMU 63 - Jared Brownridge hit a 25-foot three-pointer with 2.6 seconds left to lift the Broncos to the thrilling win.
DEPTH: The Lions get the most out of their 12 active players, using 11 players in the win over Pacific.They have had 11 different starting line-ups, using the 11th on Thursday, Jan. 19 against San Diego... The Lions used "just" just nine players on Jan. 14 against Portland, just the second time they have used less than 10 in a game. They used nine players against No. 19 Saint Mary's on Dec. 29. They used all 11 available players against the Toreros and used all 12 players on Dec. 31 against BYU, on Jan. 5 against Pepperdine and again Jan. 12 against Gonzaga... Senior Kelvin Amayo led the Lions against USD with 17 points, five rebounds and a pair of assists. In leading the Lions in all three categories, he was the seventh different Lion to have led the team in rebounding, seventh player to lead the Lions in assists and seven have led them in scoring.
SENIORS: Brandon Brown, Buay Tuach, Stefan Jovanovic, Shamar Johnson and Kelvin Amayo are the five seniors leading the way this season for the Lions. Brown had his sixth 20-point game of the season with 21 points on 9-for-11 shooting in the win over Pacific. He added six assists and just two turnovers. He leads the way at point, sitting is 13th in scoring (13.7 ppg) and 7th in assists (4.5 apg). He is also 7th in steals per game (1.1) and 6th in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.1).
Senior Buay Tuach continues to do a little of everything for the Lions, leading the Lions with 19 points against Gonzaga, adding four rebounds. He followed that with 15 points, eight rebounds, two assists and a pair of big steals against Portland. He had a team-high 13 points at Santa Clara, going 5-for-7 from the field, hitting all three of his three-point attempts. He ranks 21st in scoring (11.4 ppg), 11th in shooting (53.3%), 14th in assists (2.7), 11th in three-point shooting (42.0%), and 5th in steals (1.3 spg).
Senior Shamar Johnson returned to the line-up after missing the non-conference finale and the WCC opener. He returned by scoring 10 points with six rebounds and a career-best six assists against BYU. He went for 12 points and eight rebounds in the win over Santa Clara at home and led the Lions with a career-equalling nine rebounds in win over Portland, adding 11 points. The Pensacola, Fla., native has become a leader for the Lions and is having his best season with 8.4 ppg and 5.2 rpg. He is 19th in the WCC in rebounds and 7th with 1.9 offensive rebounds per game.
Rounding out the LMU senior class is a pair of transfers. Stefan Jovanovic scored in double figures the last seven non-conference games, including a pair of career-highs in the process. He is 20th in rebounds (5.1) and 10th in shooting at 53.3 percent. He is also ranked 5th in offensive rebounds at 2.4 and 7th in blocks at 1.1. The final senior in the rotation, Kelvin Amayo, who was granted a sixth-year of eligibility by the NCAA, has been a big presence off the bench. In 19.1 minutes a game he is averaging 5.6 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 1.68 apg, and 0.84 spg. He had nine points, six rebounds, two assists and a steal against Santa Clara on Jan. 7, and had a big offensive put-back in the final 30 seconds to help Lions in comeback win over Portland.
NUMBERS... Junior Steven Haney Jr., a 2016 WCC All-Academic Selection and NABC Allstate Good Works team nominee, hit a trio of three-pointers to score 11 points against Pacific, giving him 110 three-pointers in his career, ranking 13th all-time in LMU history... Speaking of three pointers, the Lions hit 12 against Pacific, tying the high on the season (they had 12 against UT Arlington on Dec. 22). The game against Pacific was the NABC's Coaches vs. Cancer Suits and Sneakers game. During the game, LMU's student booster club, THE CAGE, committed to donating $50 for every three-pointer made during the game. The Lions made them pay, and for a good cause... The Lions 48 second half points against the Tigers was the most in that half on the season. The 79 total points equaled their high in conference games this season, scoring 79 in the win over Portland... The seven blocked shots in the win was the second most on the year. They had nine against UIW on Dec. 17... The 56 points allowed to Santa Clara on Jan. 7 was one of 10 times the Lions have held an opponent under 70 points. They are 7-3 in those games... In addition, they held the Broncos to 36.8 percent from the field in that first meeting. They then held Portland to 42.1 percent shooting, the ninth and 10th opponent the Lions held to under 45% shooting in a game, improving to 8-2 in those games. The Lions are 9-1 when shooting better than their opponent, 8-2 when out-rebounding the opponent. They were out-rebounded 37-29 by Pacific and improved to just 2-8 when the opponent is better on the boards.
The Lions shot over 50 percent from the field in back-to-back games, hitting 52.3 percent against Boise State after going for a season-best 57.4 percent in the win over Portland State. It is the first time the Lions have posted back-to-back games over 50 percent since December of 2009. The Lions went over 50 percent for the fifth time on the season with a 52.6% clip against Portland. LMU shot 50 percent or better just twice all of last year.
MORE NUMBERS... The Lions are outscoring opponents 668 to 557 in points in the paint the first 20 games. The best of the season came in a 54-14 edge in points in the paint against UIW... The 48-point win to open the season was tied for the sixth largest in program history, equaling the Lions 78-31 win over San Diego on Dec. 10, 1958... They opened a new season with a win for the sixth straight season, improving to 41-21 in season openers since 1955-56... The Lions scored 57 points in the first 20 minutes against Vanguard, the most in the opening half since the 1991 season... In the second half, LMU held Vanguard to just 17 points, limiting them to just 5-for-35 from the field and 1-for-18 from the three. It was the lowest half by an opponent since the Lions held Seattle to just 11 first half points in an 83-51 win on Nov. 23, 1996... They had 59 rebounds in that game, the most since they had 61 against Pacifica on Nov. 9, 2012.
COMING UP The Lions will then play their next three on the road, traveling to BYU on Saturday, Jan. 28. The Lions will end the road-heavy portion of the WCC schedule when they go to San Diego on Feb. 2 and then the first meeting of the season at San Francisco on Feb. 4.
The Lions will return home for Family Weekend. The precursor to the weekend will be a showdown with Gonzaga on Thursday, Feb. 9 at 7 pm. The Zags will enter the game as the highest ranked team to ever come to Gersten Pavilion. Then on Saturday, join the Lions for the annual Family Weekend Game Day Experience as the Lions take on Portland at 1 pm. The activities start with the annual Tailgate Party at 11 am. For tickets:
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