Feb. 1, 2012
LMU men's basketball continues their annual two-game rivalry with Pepperdine on Thursday, Feb. 2, when the Waves come to Gersten Pavilion for a 7:30 p.m., tip-off on Fox Sports PrimeTicket. The Lions took the first meeting in the Wells Fargo PCH Cup battle with a 68-58 victory in Malibu on Jan. 12. The ASLMU Pregame Tailgate Party will get things started at 5:30 p.m. The game can also be heard on KXLU 88.9 FM and on LMULions.com.
INSIDE THE LIONS
The Lions earned a 62-59 win over Portland on Saturday, Jan. 28, completing the first round of play against each of the teams in the WCC. The Lions have already earned a split against BYU and sit at 6-3 in the West Coast Conference, the best start to league play since beginning 8-2 in the 2005-06 season. The Lions are tied for third in the WCC with BYU and improved to 13-9 overall.
After missing three games due to a concussion, junior Jarred DuBois returned to the line-up last week and came off the bench to lead the Lions with a season-high 18 points in the win over Portland, including his three-pointer with 17 seconds left for the game winner. He is one of four Lions in double figures on the season with 10.6 points per game. Drew Viney returned to the line-up on Dec. 27 against Vanguard and scored a game-high 29 points with eight rebounds. He had his 11th career double-double with 19 points and 10 rebounds in the win over the Waves. He has played 12 games on the season and is averaging 15.9 points per contest after going for a team-high 18 points against Saint Mary's. Sophomore Anthony Ireland is second on the team with 15.4 points per games, scoring 20 or better in eight games this season and 10 in his career. Ashley Hamilton returned to the line-up against San Diego on Jan. 7 for the first time since injuring his foot on Nov. 19, going for 16 points and seven rebounds against the Toreros. In nine games, he is averaging 12.3 points and 5.3 rebounds, averaging 6.3 boards per game in WCC play to lead the Lions. DuBois and Viney both reached the 1,000-point marker in their careers this season.
The Lions are now 7-2 on the road this season, winning five in a row all in WCC play and have matched the 1990-91 team for the most road wins since the Paul Westhead era. The Lions have won their first five road games in conference play for the first time since the Lions went 14-0 in league play in the 1987-88 season.
The Lions lead the WCC in free throw percentage, hitting 73.4 percent. The Lions' top-six scorers hit better than 75 percent, including LaRon Armstead's 87.9 percent, which leads the WCC. He is 51-for-58 on the season. Anthony Ireland is tied for ninth in the WCC at 77.4 percent. Jarred DuBois, Drew Viney and Ashley Hamilton are hitting 82.9, 80.4 and 76.1 percent from the line, respectively. In the Lions two wins over BYU and Santa Clara, free throws came in big as they hit 15-for-16 free throws in the final minute of play to ice the game down the stretch (7-for-8 at BYU; 8-for-8 at SCU).
LMU is tops in the league in three-point field goal defense, holding opponents to 28.6 percent from long range overall and 24.9 percent in WCC games. The Lions have held 12 teams under 30 percent for the game, including BYU's 2-for-25 (8 percent), as well as Gonzaga and Portland to 15.4 percent (2-for-13). In non-conference they held UCLA to 13.3 percent and North Texas' to 15.8 percent.
More numbers: As of games on Monday, LMU is one of just seven teams in the nation with a 5-0 (or better) road conference record (using CBSSports.com): UNC-Asheville (6-0, Big South), LMU (5-0, WCC), Oral Roberts (5-0, Summit), Wichita State (5-0, Missouri Valley), Creighton (5-0, MVC), Saint Mary's (5-0) and Long Beach State (5-0, Big West). The Lions are 10-1 when leading at the half, 10-1 when outrebounding their opponent, 13-3 when shooting better than 40 percent, 10-0 when scoring 70 or more points, and 7-1 when holding their opponent to less than 40 percent shooting.
The Lions have played in three overtime games in a season for the first time since 2007-08, winning all three. It is the first time in program history the Lions have won three overtime games in a single season.
Injuries once again have forced change in the Lions starting five as the Lions have started nine different line-ups. LMU's top-seven players missed a combined 66 games in 2010-11 as the Lions featured 16 different starting line-ups. They have missed a combined 28 games so far in 2011-12... Junior Jarred DuBois missed the last three games after suffering a concussion against San Diego on Jan. 7. He played 15 minutes with nine points in his return Monday, Jan. 26... Junior Ashley Hamilton, who was the Lions' leading scorer after three games, played 16 minutes against Harvard, scoring eight points before he left with a injury to his right foot. He missed 12 games before returning against San Diego on Jan. 7... Senior Drew Viney missed 10 of the Lions' first 12 games after a stress fracture in his foot the week prior to the start of the season in October. He returned to the line-up full-time with a 29-point, 8-rebound performance against Vanguard on Dec. 27... Prior to the team's departure to San Francisco Dec. 31, redshirt sophomore Edgar Garibay asked for and was granted his release from the LMU men's basketball program. Garibay played 37 games in three season, earning a medical redshirt in his freshman season in 2009-10 after tearing his ACL.
GAME #23 - Wells Fargo PCH Cup
This will be the 156th meeting all-time between LMU and Pepperdine, the longest running series for the Lions. The Wells Fargo PCH Cup returns to Gersten Pavilion as the Lions look to add to their 68-58 win in Malibu during the first meeting on Jan. 12. In the first meeting, Anthony Ireland led the Lions with 21 points and Drew Viney had a double-double with 19 points and 10 rebounds. The Lions pulled away down the stretch, going 17-for-28 from the free throw line while Pepperdine was 8-for-12. Thursday's game will be Greek Night at the Game, and along with Wells Fargo, is sponsored by the Loyolan, who will giveaway Iggy Boobleheads. IB Modern will perform at halftime and fans won't want to miss the Wells Fargo PCH Cup T-Shirt. The action starts with the ASLMU Pregame Tailgate Party at 5:30 p.m.
AT THE POINT
Sophomore Anthony Ireland started the season scoring 22 or more points in four of five games, and with his 25 points Jan. 26 in the win over Santa Clara, he now has eight games with 20 or more on the season and 10 in his young career. He is one of two Lions to play every game this season and he is second in the WCC in minutes played at 36.0 per game. He enters the week ranked fourth in the WCC in scoring at 15.4 points per game after going for a career-high 27 points in the road win at BYU. He finished the game with five assists and a career-best five steals to go with his best shooting night as a Lion. He finished 7-for-9 from the field and 12-for-14 from the charity stripe to earn WCC Player of the Week honors. He is also third in the WCC with 5.0 assists per game. He became just the second Lion since 1998 to earn a double-double with points and assists when he did it against Vanguard (14 pts, 10 assists). He had 21 assists in the final two non-conference games, going for a career-high 11 against Morgan State on Dec. 21. According to records, its is the most in back-to-back games since Terrell Lowery in 1990. He now has 205 career assists to rank 19th all-time at LMU. He also has 34 steals on the season (1.5 spg), to rank sixth in the WCC.
Senior LaRon Armstead came off the bench to score 22 points against then #23 Saint Louis, becoming the Lions' senior leader and a mainstay in the Lions' rotation since. He went for double figures in six of seven games before the Morgan State game, and has returned to that form in the last three WCC contests, going for 14 off the bench against No. 21 Gonzaga, 12 at BYU and 11 more at Santa Clara. He has now played in 97 games for the Lions in his career, scoring 593 points with 267 rebounds. He is fifth on the team with 8.5 points per game while adding 2.6 rebounds, and 15 steals. He leads the WCC in free throw percentage (87.9%), and also has hit 23 three-pointers, ranked second on the squad.
Redshirt senior Drew Viney entered 2011-12 needing just a single point to become the 31st player in LMU history to reach 1,000 career points. After having to miss the first six games due to a stress fracture in his foot, it took exactly 12 seconds in his first game back against Columbia to hit the century mark. Viney knocked down a 12-foot jumper to become the 31st player in school history to reach a 1,000 points. After missing three more games due to soreness in the foot, he returned to the line-up against Vanguard, scoring 29 points with eight rebounds. He went for 19 points and 10 rebounds for his 11th career double-double in the win over Pepperdine, which is ranked tied for 12th at LMU. He now has 1,190 points to rank 20th all-time at LMU after going for 18 on Thursday and 14 on Saturday. He also has 466 rebounds and to 28th all-time at LMU. He needs and 34 to become just the 13th player in LMU history to have 1,000 career points and 500 career rebounds. He is also ranked fifth all-time with 75 blocks.
Redshirt junior Jarred DuBois, who began play with the Lions in the same 2008-09 campaign with senior LaRon Armstead, played just five games a year ago due to foot surgery and was granted a medical redshirt. After missing three games due to a concussion, he returned against Santa Clara to score nine points, hitting his final point on a free throw to give him 1,000 points in his career. He is the 32nd player in LMU history to do so and after his season-high 18 points Saturday, he is averaging 10.6 points per game this season. In his career at LMU, he is ranked seventh all-time with 135 career three-pointers, fifth with a career free throw percentage of 84.2 percent and 18th with 213 career assists.
- GO LIONS -