Second Match-up With Zags Up Next For Lions

Jan. 25, 2012

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Fresh off its first WCC win of the season, the LMU women's basketball team travels to Spokane, Wash., to face No. 20/22 Gonzaga on Thursday, Jan. 26 at the McCarthey Athletic Center. Tip off in "The Kennel" is scheduled for 6 p.m. The matchup begins a three-game road swing for the Lions who will also travel to Portland San Francisco before returning to Gersten Pavilion on Feb. 6.

The West Coast Conference and CBS Sports Network partnered to air two WCC women's basketball games this season, including the Lions versus Bulldogs on Jan. 26. CBS Sports Network can be found on cable and satellite providers nationwide, including DIRECTV channel 613 and DISH Network channel 152.

A solid defensive effort against one of the nation's best three-point shooting teams helped get a huge monkey off the back of the Lions as the they claimed a 64-54 WCC win over Santa Clara On Jan. 21. The win snapped a season-long six-game losing streak for LMU and also served as the team's first WCC win. Leading 33-21 at the half, the Lions withstood a pair of second-half runs by the Broncos, and hit free-throw attempts down the stretch for the 10-point victory. Alex Cowling finished with a team-high 21 points while freshman Taylor Anderson added a career-high nine points. Hazel Ramirez also chipped in nine points and Courtney Collishaw pulled down a career-high 11 boards.

LMU's Jan. 21 win over Santa Clara was No. 350 all-time for head coach Julie Wilhoit. Wilhoit is in her 17th season with the Lions and 24th season overall as a head coach. The majority (229) of those 350 victories have come at LMU where she has recorded two 20-plus win seasons, 13 double-digit win seasons and nine seasons of .500 or above.

Gonzaga holds a 31-22 edge over LMU in the all-time series and enters Thursday's match-up as winners of the last eight meetings. This marks the second meeting of the 2011-12 season, with the first coming just 19 days earlier in LMU's Gersten Pavilion. In that Jan. 7 match-up, the then No. 24 Zags used a 13-0 run midway through the second half to pull away, 80-54. LMU had battled through the first half, and trailed just 34-26 at the break, but could do little to keep up with the Zags' 61-percent shooting from the field. Alex Cowling scored a game-high 27 points for the Lions while Kayla Standish led Gonzaga with 22 points.

Gonzaga enters the week ranked No. 20 in the latest USA Today/ESPN Coaches Poll and No. 22 in the latest AP poll. The Zags are 17-3 overall and 6-1 in WCC play, sitting just behind BYU (7-1) in the conference standings. On Jan. 14 the Zags had its 34-game WCC unbeaten streak snapped in a 66-63 loss to Saint Mary's, but they quickly rebounded with wins at Santa Clara and San Diego. Kayla Standish, the Jan. 23 WCC Player of the Week, leads Gonzaga with 15.4 ppg and 7.5 rpg. Katelan Redmon (13.5 ppg) and Haiden Palmer (12.4 ppg) also average double figures for the Zags, who have six players averaging more than five points per game. The team's offense ranks among the best in the nation. Their 77.2 ppg is No. 10, their 45.4 field-goal percentage is No. 11 and their 17.9 apg is No. 7.

Game in and game out, Alex Cowling continues her assault on nearly every category in the LMU record book and her numbers this season put her among the nation's best in a handful of categories. In games through Jan. 22, Cowling ranks No. 12 in points per game (20.8), No. 25 in double-doubles (8), No. 50 in free throw percentage (84.9) and No. 87 in rebounds per game (8.6).

A 21-point effort against Santa Clara on Jan. 21 brought Alex Cowling's career scoring total to 1,457 - moving her into sole possession of fourth place in the LMU all-time record book. She surpassed current Associate Head Coach Lynn Flanagan (1988-91) who finished her career with 1,436 points. Cowling is 205 points off the all-time career record of 1,662 held by Bryn Britton (1998-02). Cowling's next hurdle is former teammate Renahy Young (2007-10) who sits in third place with 1,562 points.

Alex Cowling is also moving up the ranks in a number of additional career statistical categories. She currently ranks No. 1 in scoring average (17.1 ppg), No. 7 in total rebounds (613), No. 5 in rebounding average (7.2 rpg), No. 3 in field goals (557), No. 4 in field-goal percentage (.487), No. 7 in total free throws (278) and No. 3 in free-throw percentage (.813).

While redshirt junior Alex Cowling continues her run at the LMU career-scoring mark, she is also edging closer to her own single-season scoring mark. As a sophomore in 2009-10, Cowling poured in 526 points, claiming the LMU single-season scoring mark from Kate Murray (492 points, 2003-04). Through 19 games this season, Cowling has 395 points and sits just 131 points from her own record. With nine games remaining on the regular season schedule, plus the guarantee of at least one WCC Tournament game, Cowling needs to average just 13.1 ppg over that 10-game span to meet her mark.

Beginning with her final attempt on Dec. 10 versus Portland State, Alex Cowling hit 38 consecutive free throws before finally missing her first attempt on Jan. 12 at San Diego. Looking to begin a new streak, she went on to hit her next three free throws in the game.

Alex Cowling was named the WCC Women's Basketball Player of the Month for December after averaging 22.5 points and 8.8 rebounds during LMU's eight games that month. She began the month with her first of three 30-plus point efforts, pouring in 31 in a 57-54 win at New Mexico. She recorded five consecutive double-doubles that began with a 30-point, 11-rebound effort in a win over Sacramento State and ended with a 32-point, 12-rebound finish against Saint Mary's. Her 32 points against the Gaels was also a career-high. She shot 46 percent from the field and 56.6 percent from three and also closed out the month of December riding a streak of 26 consecutive made free throws.

Alex Cowling is racking up the double-double performances, tallying her eighth such performances of the season on Dec. 29 against Saint Mary's. The 32-point, 12-rebound outing against the Gaels also served as her fifth consecutive double-double. That streak was snapped two days later when Cowling finished with 13 points and six rebounds against San Francisco.

Perhaps inspired by the four top career three-point shooters in LMU history (Renahy Young, Lisa Helmers, Amanda Patton and Rachael Ziemann) sitting courtside on Dec. 19, Monica DeAngelis sank an LMU record-tying seven three's on her way to a career-high 27 points against Cal Poly. She joins Patton and Ziemann atop the program's single-game three-point field goal list.

LMU's 57-54 win over New Mexico on Dec. 1 was the first ever against the Lobos on their home court, breaking a four-game losing streak at The Pit. In addition, a handful of Lions tied or broke career-records in a variety of statistical categories. None was more impressive than Alex Cowling tying her career-high of 31 points, of 12-of-21 shooting. The redshirt junior also tied her career-high with four three-pointers and set a new high in steals with five. Guards Hazel Ramirez and Courtney Collishaw both set career marks with six assists apiece while Collishaw added a career-high eight rebounds.

The West Coast Conference will feature its women's basketball coaches with weekly live-chats on Each week throughout the conference season, head to our website for an exclusive live-chat with a different WCC women's basketball head coach. Fans are encouraged to take part by submitting questions at The first chat will take place on Tuesday, January 3 at 12 p.m. PT and each live-chat thereafter will be every Monday at 12 p.m. PT. LMU Head Coach Julie Wilhoit will be featured on Monday, February 6.

Alex Cowling was named to the five-member DoubleTree Los Angeles Westside Thanksgiving Classic all-tournament team, marking the fourth consecutive time she has received the honor. Cowling led the Lions by averaging 17.5 points and 14 rebounds over the two games and was instrumental down the stretch of the Consolation Game against Wyoming, leading LMU to its first win of the season. Her 17 rebounds against Youngstown State were one shy of the all-time tournament record and a personal career-high for the redshirt junior.

Cowling, a redshirt junior for the Lions, was the only non-senior named to the 10-member Preseason All-WCC team. The WCC Newcomer of the Year in 2008-09 and a first team All-WCC selection in 2009-10, the Benicia, Calif., native was leading LMU in scoring at 22.5 ppg in 2010-11 before suffering an injury just six games in. Despite that setback, she currently ranks No. 1 in LMU's record book for career scoring average (16.1 ppg) and No. 10 in career points (1,062). Back to full strength, Cowling will be the prime catalyst to the Lions' success this season.

For the second consecutive season the LMU women's basketball team has been selected fourth in the West Coast Conference Preseason Coaches Poll. The Lions received 36 points in a vote by the nine WCC head coaches. Reigning WCC champion Gonzaga was selected as the favorite to win the WCC title in 2011-12, earning 64 points and eight of the nine possible first-place votes. Conference newcomer BYU was selected to finish second, earning 52 points and one first-place vote, while Pepperdine was selected to finish third (50 points). Saint Mary's (fifth, 34 points), Portland (sixth, 32 points), San Diego (seventh, 26 points), Santa Clara (eighth, 22 points) and San Francisco (ninth, 8 points) rounded out the preseason poll.

LMU is celebrating its Centennial in 2011-12 and athletics will honor the anniversary all season long. LMUat100 will feature a Centennial Game for each of the varsity programs, which included women's basketball on Dec. 4 against UCLA and Jan. 21 against Santa Clara. For more information, visit

Separated by 19.1 miles of scenic coastline, longtime cross-town adversaries Loyola Marymount and Pepperdine have come together in an effort to boost their decades-long rivalry with the creation of the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) Challenge. The series, which is in its third year, serves as an annual scorecard for the NCAA-sponsored athletic contests between the Lions and Waves, and challenges each institution to rise above the other within the West Coast Conference. LMU and Pepperdine will be represented by over 12 of their intercollegiate athletic teams through both regular and post-season competitions over the course of the academic calendar. Any head-to-head competition, including matches in the post-season and tournaments throughout the year, will be counted toward the scoring and added to the scorecard as they occur. For the sports in which the two teams do not meet head-to-head, the teams will battle for points that will be awarded on the basis of overall finish at their respective post-season championships. The Wave currently lead the Lions, 5.5-3.5, in 2011-12. To learn more about the PCH Challenge and view the current scorecard, please visit:

The 2012 West Coast Conference Men's and Women's Basketball Championships return to the bright lights of Las Vegas and Orleans Arena on February twenty-ninth through March fifth as 18 teams battle for two tickets to the NCAA Tournament. Visit today for complete championship and ticket information.

Fans can watch all LMU home games live on the internet through Lions All-Access on In conjunction with CBS Online, All-Access is the official home to video broadcasts of LMU Athletics. Lions' All-Access will bring all non-televisied home games for men's basketball, women's basketball and women's volleyball. To subscribe to All-Access, click on the "Multimedia" tab on

Once again, in conjunction with Stretch Internet, all LMU home and road games will be broadcast live online at Just click on the "Listen Live" link on the women's basketball home page, then click on "Listen" or "Archive" next to the game of your choice. All broadcasts will be archived within 72 hours of their original airing and will include both the 15-minute pre-game show and post-game interviews.

Log on to for all the latest info on the Lions, including updated schedules, rosters, player bios, and more. Don't forget to also sign up to follow the Lions on Facebook ( and Twitter ( Additionally, LMU women's basketball now has its own Facebook page, which can be found at Coach Julie Wilhoit also will be on Twitter this year - find her at




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