Jan 16, 2014; Malibu, CA, USA; Pepperdine Waves forward Brendan Lane (21) fouls Gonzaga Bulldogs guard Kyle Dranginis (3) in the second half at Firestone Fieldhouse. Gonzaga defeated Pepperdine 70-53. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Fielding-USA TODAY Sports

WCC Game Preview: LMU vs. Pepperdine

LMU Lions (11-16, 3-12) vs. Pepperdine Waves (14-13, 7-8)

Date: Thursday, February 20, 2014

Location: Gersten Pavilion, Los Angeles, CA

Time: 8:00 PM PST

TV: ESPNU

Video: http://espn.go.com/watchespn/index

LiveStats: http://www.wccsports.com/gametracker/launch/gt_mbaskbl.html?event=1286243&school=west&sport=mbaskbl&camefrom=&startschool=&

This Season: Pepperdine won the first matchup by a score of 80-69 at Firestone Fieldhouse

PROJECTED STARTERS 

LMU

Anthony Ireland, 18.6 PPG 5.4 APG

Evan Payne, 15.1 PPG

Nick Stover, 4.2 PPG

Alex Osborne, 6.2 PPG, 4.9 RPG

Gabe Levin, 11.2 PPG, 7.2 RPG

Pepperdine

Jeremy Major, 9.9 PPG, 4.3 APG

Amadi Udenyi, 6.2 PPG, 2.9 APG

Malcolm Brooks, 10.0 PPG

Jett Raines, 4.4 PPG

Brendan Lane, 13.8 PPG, 7.7 RPG

 

Keys to the Game

LMU

Frontcourt players must step up:  Anthony Ireland and Evan Payne have had to handle too much of the scoring burden this season for LMU.  The big men, especially those other than Gabe Levin need to provide some scoring punch.  If they can get something out of Alex Osborne, C.J. Blackwell, or Nick Stover, they will have a chance to win this game.

 

Pepperdine

Balanced scoring: This team has a lot more scoring options than many do in the WCC.  They have four consistent double figure scorers, and many other guys who could very easily go out and get double figures on a given night.  If the Waves can get 4 double figure scorers and at least 2 off the bench (one is almost guaranteed now that Stacy Davis does not start), then they should have no problem winning this game.

 

Key Matchup

Anthony Ireland vs. Jeremy Major: Major represents the young, budding star point guard that Ireland did three years ago.  While Ireland is clearly the better player as of right now, Major has a lot of potential, and if he outplays Ireland, Pepperdine should come out with a victory.

 

Prediction

This is the travel partner game for these two schools.  This is the only time either team appears on the ESPN family of networks in conference play.  Pepperdine needs to win this game for WCC Tournament seeding purposes.  I think they’ll get it done.  Pepperdine 72, LMU 65.

Tags: Basketball College Basketball LMU LMU Lions Pepperdine Pepperdine Waves WCC West Coast Conference

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