#7 Portland Pilots (15-15, 7-11) vs. #10 Loyola Marymount Lions (12-18, 4-14)
Date: Thursday, March 6, 2014
Location: Orleans Arena, Las Vegas, Nev.
Time: 6:00 PM PST
This Season: Portland won 71-57 at Gersten Pavilion and then also won 71-64 at the Chiles Center.
David Carr (in last 3 games as a starter), 4.7 PPG, 4.0 APG
Bobby Sharp, 8.1 PPG
Bryce Pressley, 8.9 PPG, 3.4 APG
Ryan Nicholas, 12.9 PPG, 8.7 RPG
Thomas van der Mars, 13.3 PPG, 7.1 RPG
Anthony Ireland, 18.7 PPG 5.4 APG
Evan Payne, 15.1 PPG
Nick Stover, 4.2 PPG
Alex Osborne, 6.4 PPG, 5.4 RPG
Gabe Levin, 11.1 PPG, 7.0 RPG
Keys to the Game
Bryce Pressley: He has been on fire of late, and needs to find his shot because he and Bobby Sharp have the ability to open up the interior for Nicholas and van der Mars. But Pressley will also have more ball-handling responsibilities without Alec Wintering. While David Carr is a decent point guard, teams will be able to pressure him more than they did with Wintering.
Defense of Levin/Osborne: These two will have their hands full with Portland’s frontcourt, and they don’t have much behind them besides Marin Mornar. The Lions can’t go zone because of the outstanding 3 point shooting of Pressley and Sharp, so Levin and Osborne will have to contain Nicholas and van der Mars one on one in the post without fouling.
Gabe Levin vs. Ryan Nicholas: A youth vs. experience matchup here. Nicholas may be the more fundamentally sound player but Levin might be a bit more athletic. We’ll see if either one of these power forwards can dominate the game and lead their team to a win.
It’s the WCC Tournament and we all know what that means for LMU. I expect nothing less this year, as Ireland and company will be too much for Portland’s recently depleted roster. LMU 69, Portland 62.