Fight for PCH Cup Continues Thursday
PCH Cup rivalry fight continues as men's basketball travels to Malibu on Thursday.
Feb. 13, 2013
|GAME:||LMU (8-16, 1-10) at Pepperdine (11-13, 3-8)|
|DATE/TIME:||Feb. 14, 2013 // 7:00 p.m. (PST)|
|LOCATION:||Firestone Fieldhouse // Malibu, CA|
|RADIO:||KXLU 88.9 FM (Jesse Kass)|
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MALIBU, Calif. -- LMU men's basketball will complete their three-game road swing in West Coast Conference action when they travel to Pepperdine on Thursday, Feb. 14 for round two of the annual Wells Fargo PCH Cup Challenge. Game time is set for 7 pm, and the game can be seen online through the WCC Digital Network and heard on KXLU 88.9 FM. The Lions are coming off a stretch of three games in six days as they will return on home on Saturday, Feb. 16 for Family Weekend.
INSIDE THE LIONS
The Lions are 8-16 overall, 1-10 in the WCC after falling to No. 6 Gonzaga last Saturday. Anthony Ireland continues to pace the Lions at 20.3 points per game, ranking second in the WCC and 13th nationally (as of Feb. 10). He was the Lions only scorer in double figures with 30 against Gonzaga, matching a career-high and earning an ovation from the Gonzaga fans when he left the game. He is the first Lion since Brandon Worthy in 2006 to have multiple 30-point games in one season. He had 17 points in 42 minutes on Monday against San Diego and then had 21 points despite the flu against Portland. Ireland is on pace to post the highest scoring average since Terrell Lowery led the WCC with 26.0 ppg in 1992. In addition to scoring, he ranks in the top-16 in eight other statistical categories in the WCC, including rebounds (16th), assists (7th) and steals (5th). Ireland has been featured in some multimedia segments the past couple weeks, check them out:
Senior Ashley Hamilton is having his best season as a Lion, scoring 15 points with eight rebounds in the first meeting against San Diego, giving him a thousand points and 500 rebounds in his career, the 14th player in program history to reach those milestones. He is averaging 13.5 ppg and 6.6 rpg in his final season, after going for his second double-double of the season and fifth of his career with 11 points and 12 rebounds against USD. He ranks ranking 12th and 8th, respectively, within the WCC in scoring and rebounds.
All about shooting: The Lions have had five games when hitting better than 50 percent from three and hold a 4-1 record in those games. They did it in their WCC win over the Broncos, hitting 9-for-16 (56.3 percent) from long range, going 6-for-8 in the second half. Since then it has been a struggle. During the eight-game skid, the Lions have shot a combined 37.7 percent (159-421) from the field, including a 28.3 percent clip against USF on Jan. 19 and a 25 percent outing on Jan. 31 against the Zags (the lowest since shooting 21.2 percent at Portland on Jan. 21, 2010). The Lions shot 47.4 percent (27-of-57) against the Toreros, the highest since hitting 56.8 percent against CSUB on Dec. 29. Its been even more of a struggle from long range, as the Lions where ranked fourth in the WCC in three-point shooting following the Santa Clara game at 37.5 percent. In the eight games since, the Lions have shot just 40-for-152 from three (26.3 percent ) and are now ranked eighth at 33.6 percent.
Juniors Ayodeji Egbeyemi and Alex Osborne have made an impact for the Lions with their best seasons at LMU. Egbeyemi, who along with Ireland has played and started every game this season, is ranked 24th in the league, scoring 10.8 points per game, and is ninth in rebounding at 6.1 per game. He is also 10th in three-pointers made (1.5 pg), 13th in blocked shots (0.63 bpg) and is third in minutes played at 33.9. He had his third career double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds on Monday against USD. As for Osborne, he has started the last 15 games and has made an impact in the post. He is 12th in the league in steals and second on the team with 33 (1.38 spg). He is also 15th in blocked shots with 14. He went for 10 points, four rebounds, four steals and three blocks against Pepperdine on Jan. 24.
AT THE POINT
Junior Anthony Ireland entered the 2012-13 season on the Lou Henson Player of the Year watch list and was named to the Lou Henson Award Preseason All-American Team. He also was named Preseason All-WCC and as a junior is one of the most experienced players on the LMU roster, not missing a game since he arrived LMU, playing 90 games with 83 starts entering the Pepperdine game. He has 486 points, 91 assists and 40 steals to lead the Lions in 2012-13, giving him 1,374 points (ranked 15th all-time at LMU), 354 assists (8th all-time) and 129 steals (14th all-time) in his career. He became the 33rd Lion to score 1,000 in a career in the game against North Texas and earned his fourth career double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds at SMU. He had his 25th game with at least 20 points, going for 21 against Portland and 30 against Gonzaga. The Lions are 14-11 in games when he goes over 20 points. He was the only Lion to play every game last season and was second in the WCC in minutes played at 36.5 per game and he is averaging a league best 37.0 this season. The first-team All-WCC and NABC All-District selection was second in the WCC in scoring at 16.1 points per game and fourth with 4.9 assists per contest. He earned two WCC Player of the Week honors as a sophomore and was the second Lion since 1998 to earn a double-double with points and assists.
INSIDE THE GAME
This will be the 158th meeting all-time between LMU and Pepperidne in men's basketball history, the 75th on the Pepperdine campus. The Lions fell to the Waves in the first meeting of the season, 60-57. The Lions swept the season series last season, doing it for the first time since 1996. The game will be part of the Wells Fargo PCH Cup, which began in the 2009-10 season pitting the two crosstown rivals just 19.1 miles apart in a head-to-head competition among the 12 intercollegiate programs they share in common.
THE FIRST MEETING
LMU used the press to fight back from a late 11-point deficit, but could not get the tying hoop in the final two minutes as they fell to Pepperdine, 60-57 on Jan. 24. LMU had four players in double figures, including 14 from Anthony Ireland. Ayodeji Egbeyemi had 11 points and a team-high eight rebounds, while Ashley Hamilton and Alex Osborne had 10 each... The Lions shooting woes continued, hitting just 31.8 percent in the second half and 36 percent in the game. For the third straight game the Lions started the game 1-for-11 from three or worse and finished just 4-for-25 from long range (16 percent). Ireland went just 4-for-18 from the field, 2-of-14 from long range... The Waves hit 45.8 percent and just 11-for-19 (57.9 percent) from the free throw line as the Lions fought back down the stretch only to see the game go pointless in the final 2:21 of the game... LMU used defense to fight back, holding a 25-16 edge in points off turnovers, forcing the the Waves to 17 turnovers on a season-best 12 steals. Osborne had four of them. Thanks to seven straight misses from the field by the Lions, the Waves would extend the lead to 11, 59-48, with 5:06 to play. LMU's press would get them back in it thanks to a 9-0 run, making it 59-57 on an Egbeyemi steal and lay-in with 2:41 to play. After one of two free throws from the Waves made it 60-57 with 2:21 to play, that would be it for both teams.
The Lions are playing with eight scholarship players entering the game against Pepperdine (they have 12 scholarship players on the roster in 2012-13).
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