Lions Head to Rockies for Road Finale
Men's basketball to play final non-conference road game when they face Colorado State on Monday.
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FORT COLLINS, Colo. - The busy end of non-conference in the month of December continues for LMU men's basketball on Monday, Dec. 19 as the Lions travel to Colorado State to take on the Rams in the final non-conference road trip of the season. Tip-off is set for 6 pm (PST) and can be seen on the Mountain West Network and heard on KXLU 88.9 FM.
|Date | Time:||Monday, Dec. 19 | 6 pm (PT)|
|Where:||Moby Arena | Fort Collins, CO|
|GAME PREVIEW:||LMU Game Notes|
|The Match-up:||LMU: ROSTER | SCHEDULE | STATS
CSU: ROSTER | SCHEDULE | STATS
|Live Broadcast:||Mountain West Network|
|RADIO:||KXLU 88.9 FM | Listien Online|
|GameDay Info:||GAMEDAY CENTRAL | BUY TICKETS | COMING TO LMU|
THE MATCH-UP LMU claimed their third straight win with a thrilling 91-90 come-from-behind victory in overtime over UIW on Saturday. The Lions improved to 5-3 on the season and will head on the road for just the third time in non-conference. The senior led Lions have been cardiac kids of late, earning one-point decisions in three of their last four match-ups, winning two of them. They had the game-winner just miss in an 80-79 setback to Boise State on Dec. 5 while defeating CSUN on Stefan Jovanovic's putback with nine seconds to play on Dec. 10. Trevor Manuel played his first game as a Lion against UIW, hitting two free throws with two seconds left to send it to overtime. Brandon Brown and Buay Tuach then scored all 11 of the Lions' points in overtime for the win. Seniors Brown, Tuach and Stefan Jovanovic all average double figures for the Lions at 15.0, 12.1 and 10.0 points per game.
Colorado State enters the match-up on Monday sitting at 8-3 on the season, having dropped an 89-70 decision to Kansas State at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colo., on Saturday. The other two setbacks have come to Wichita State at home, 82-67, on Dec. 3 and at Stanford, 56-49, on Nov. 20. They are 7-2 at home on the season, including wins of New Mexico St. (64-61), SE Louisiana (67-59), Alcorn State (80-58) and Northern Colorado (81-64). They earned a 72-58 win at Colorado for their one road win. Colorado State is one of the top teams in the nation in rebound margin, field goal percentage defense and free throw shooting. They are top-30 in each of those categories, out-rebounding opponents by +6.7, holding them to 39 percent shooting while shooting 76.1 percent from the charity stripe.
This will be the seventh meeting in the series between LMU and Colorado State. They met for the first time since 1983 a year ago, with the Rams earning an 83-75 win on Nov. 19 at Moby Arena. Brandon Brown had a then-career-high 24 points as the Rams went 32-for-42 from the free throw line while the Lions went 12-for-16... Prior to last year, the Lions last won back-to-back meetings, earning a 63-61 victory on Dec. 20, 1982, which was the Lions' final season at Alumni Gym on the LMU campus. They then returned the trip to open the following season (Nov. 26, 1983) and earned another two-point win, 73-71. Head Coach Mike Dunlap was an assistant for the Lions those seasons, working for head coach Ed Goorjian... This will be the third meeting in Fort Collins, the other coming on Dec. 18, 1968. The Rams won 76-57.
INSIDE THE LIONS The Lions are 5-3 on the season as they enter the final two weeks of 2016. They are coming off three straight wins. In the 75-68 win over Southern Utah, Brandon Brown went for a career-best 26 points on 8-for-13 shooting. In the 69-68 win over CSUN, Stefan Jovanovic scored with nine seconds remaining to lift the Lions to the road victory. He finished with a career-high 16 points on 7-for-9 shooting. On Saturday, Brown went for 24 points and a career-best eight rebounds as the Lions erased an eight-point deficit in the final 2:28 of regulation to force Overtime. Buay Tuach had 14 of his 16 points after halftime and Jovanovic had 15 points and nine rebounds.
Brown and Jovanovic are two of five seniors pacing the Lions this season. Not including Trevor Manuel, who scored 14 points in his debut Saturday, five of the Lions' top-six scorers are the seniors. Within the WCC, Brown is tied for 11th with 15.0 ppg while Tuach is 19th and Jovanovic is tied for 28th. Shamar Johnson averages 8.0 points per game while Kelvin Amayo is at 7.3 ppg. Brown and Tuach have been a stat-stuffer so far this season. Tuach is also ranked 9th in assists (3.5 apg), third in steals (1.6 spg), and 7th in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.0). Brown is ranked 7th in assists (4.6 apg), 15th in steals (1.0 spg), 15th in three-point field goal percentage (44.8%), and ninth in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.7),
The Lions post play has been key early this season, outscoring opponents 308 to 221 points in the paint in the first eight games, including setting a season best three of the last four games. They had a then season's best 44 points against Boise State on Dec. 5 and then exploded for a 50-33 edge in the win over CSUN on Dec. 10. They did one better Saturday, holding a 54-14 edge in points in the paint against UIW. It is the widest margin on record in last 20 years. They held a 44-36 edge over Boise State, a 42-28 edge at Nevada and a 36-32 edge against PSU.
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. They hit 62.1 percent in the second half to erase a 10-point deficit. The Lions went over 50 percent for the fourth time on the season with a 53.6 percent effort in the win over CSUN. It is the first time the Lions have posted back-to-back games over 50 percent since December of 2009. LMU shot 50 percent or better just twice all of last year. Senior Stefan Jovanovic, who led the Lions with a career-best 16 points in the win over CSUN, finished the game hitting 7-for-9 from the field. He did it again against UIW and is sixth in the WCC on the season hitting 58.9 percent. Senior Shamar Johnson, who led the Lions against Boise State with 14 points and seven rebounds, is is shooting 50 percent on the season (30-for-60) as is fellow senior Tuach (36-for-72). Petr Herman is also at 50 percent at 8-for-16 and freshman Mattias Markusson is hitting 60 percent (9-for-15).
LMU is among the top-50 nationally in assists per game, dishing out 17.5 per game through eight games. They have four players with an average of two or better on the season, led by the senior Brown at 4.63. Buay Tuach, who had 24 assists all of last year in his first season at LMU, has 28 in just eight games and is among the WCC leaders with 3.5 per game. Shamar Johnson is third on the team with 18 assists, and Kelvin Amayo has 16. The Lions opened the season with 27 assists on 36 made field goals against Vanguard. Brown ranked 10th all-time in LMU history with 177 assists last season while Tutu set the record for assist-to-turnover ratio at 2.69. The 27 assists was the most since putting up 30 against La Sierra on Dec. 21, 2013. They had 26 assists on 34 field goals against Boise State.
More rankings... the Lions lead the WCC in steals at 7.5 per game. Tuach is third in the league with 1.6 per game while Kelvin Amayo is 12th (1.1 spg) and Brown is 15th (1.0)... The Lions had nine blocks against UIW on Saturday. Jovanovic is ninth in the WCC with 0.9 bpg while the freshman Markusson is 14th with five. Of the nine on Saturday, four came from sophomore Trevor Manuel in his debut. The mid-season trasnfer from Oregon played his first game on Saturday against UIW, finishing with 14 points, six rebounds, the four blocks and two steals. He went 4-for-8 from the field and a perfect 6-for-6 from the charity stripe, including the two that sent the game to overtime... Jovanovic is fourth in the league in offensive rebounds at 2.1 per game while Johnson is 10th.
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. Buay Tuach led the Lions with a career-best 20 points and Jeffery McClendon also netted a career-best with 15. They opened a new season with a win for the sixth straight season, improving to 41-21 in season openers since 1955-56. In that win, the Lions scored 57 points in the first 20 minutes. It was the most points 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.
The Lions out-rebounded UIW 43-30 and held a 21-7 edge in second chance points. They continue to stress rebounding as they established that early against Vanguard with a 59-36 edge on the glass. Petr Herman led the Lions with 10 rebounds while adding eight points. The 59 rebounds were the most since they had 61 against Pacifica on Nov. 9, 2012. Freshman center Mattias Markusson had eight points and eight rebounds in his debut. His eight rebounds was one shy of Wyking Jones record of nine rebounds for most in a freshman's first game. Jones did it against Morgan State on Nov. 22, 1991.
UPNEXT The Lions will return home to play the next four games at home over the holidays. The LMU Hoops For The Holidays promotions begin when they face UT-Arlington on Thursday, Dec. 22 at 7 pm. The pre-Christmas match-up is the set-up for a memorable close to 2016.
6th ANNUAL HOLIDAY CLASSIC: LMU will host the 2016 LMU Holiday Classic on Monday, Dec. 26 against Morgan State at 5 pm. This special Christmas addition of the annual classic will feature free admission and $1 hot dogs. Bring the entire family for this special game.
YEAR-END CELEBRATION: LMU will begin play within the West Coast Conference with two of the best. Help the Lions close-out the 2016 calendar year and begin the WCC season in grand style with this special two game package to watch the Lions take on Saint Mary's on Thursday, Dec. 29 and then BYU on Friday, Dec. 31. Get one upper level ticket to each game for just $40 and lower level package is just $50. CLICK HERE FOR YEAR-END PACK.
FAMILY NEW YEAR PACK: Close out 2016 on the right foot by bringing the family to the WCC Showdown between the Lions and BYU. This special family package is for 4 upper level tickets and 4 free hot dog coupons for just $80 when the Lions take on BYU on Saturday, Dec. 31. End 2016 right with Lion basketball. CLICK HERE FOR FAMILY PACK.
The best way to get tickets to this season of LMU basketball is still through season tickets. To renew season tickets, click MY ACCOUNT. To buy new season ticket, click BUY TICKETS. Have the promo code for the local community season ticket, click PROMO CODE.
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