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WCC Men's Basketball Recaps

Feb. 5, 2007

Portland - 87
Pepperdine - 76

MALIBU, Calif.- The University of Portland men's basketball team snapped a six game losing streak Monday night, defeating Pepperdine 87-76 on the road. It was the first victory away from home this season for the Pilots, who improve their record to 7-18 (3-6 West Coast Conference) while the Waves fall to 6-19 (2-7 WCC).

It was a big night for Portland, which set a new season high in scoring while shooting a blistering 71 percent (17-24) from the field in the second half. Sophomore forward Jamie Jones led five Pilots in double figures, leading all scorers with 20 points while also grabbing a game-high 13 rebounds. It was Jones' fifth double-double of the season. Senior guard Darren Cooper had 16 points while setting a new career high with 11 rebounds, and junior forward Sherrard Watson had 17 points to go along with seven boards before exiting the game late in the second half with a shoulder injury. Senior center Ben Sullivan and freshman guard Taishi Ito each added 11 points.

For the game, Portland out-rebounded Pepperdine 53-33.

Leading 36-30 at half time, Portland came out on fire in the second frame, getting up by as many as 21 points midway through the period and cruising to victory.

For Pepperdine, center Jarrad Henry set a new WCC record with 11 blocked shots, topping the previous high of 10 by Kurt Rambis and Cedric Suitt. Kingsly Costain led the way with 13 points despite shooting 3-12 from behind the arc, while Gregg Barlow and Chase Griffin each pitched in 12.

The Pilots are now 1-10 on the road and 1-12 away from the Chiles Center this season.

Portland returns home this weekend for its final home series of the season, facing Santa Clara on Saturday and Saint Mary's on Monday. Both games are at 7 p.m.

Loyola Marymount - 67
Gonzaga - 61

Los Angeles, Calif.- It was another classic at Gersten Pavilion, as Loyola Marymount men's basketball defeated West Coast Conference leader Gonzaga, 67-61, in WCC action late Monday night. In a game that featured 17 lead changes and 12 ties, the Lions took the lead for good on a pair of free throws with 3:01 remaining by senior Adoyah Miller and held on with clutch work at the charity stripe to send the crowd of 3,815 on to the floor at Gersten Pavilion Monday night.

The Lions were led by Miller with 21 points as the fifth-year senior hit 10-for-12 from the charity stripe. Senior Matthew Knight chipped in 13 points and nine rebounds while fellow fifth-year senior John Montgomery added a career-high for the second straight night with 12 points, including clutch free throws down the stretch. Josh Heytvelt led the Zags with 18 points.

LMU improves to 11-14 on the year and 3-6 in the WCC and snaps an eight-game skid to the Zags, last winning nearly four years to the day at Gersten Pavilion, 80-74 on Feb. 8, 2003. Gonzaga falls to 17-8 and 8-2.

"The guys have been working so hard in practice the last four weeks and it proves that you play like you practice. This was a big win for us," said Head Coach Rodney Tention. "This is the best this team has felt since we got here. We executed so well tonight. The guys really deserved this."

With the game tied at the half, the game would go back-and-forth the entire half. The largest lead by both teams was when Gonzaga took a 43-39 lead with 14:33 mark after a Jeremy Pargo three-pointer. Montgomery answered with one of his three long balls and then after a steal by Montgomery, Knight gave the Lions a 44-43 lead with 13:47 on the clock.

The tug-of-war continued as Gonzaga took the lead back on another Pargo three, the Lion retook the lead on a Corey Counts three. Heytvelt hit a three of his own to take the lead back and then several possessions later junior Jon Ziri's traditional three-point play game it back to LMU. LMU fnished 7-for-13 (53.8 percent) from the three-point line while Gonzaga went 8-for-19 (42.1 percent).

Down by a pair, 54-52, Montgomery hit another three pointer and Knight hit one of two free throws to give the Lions a two-point edge, 56-54 with 6:53 on the clock. A Pargo lay-up and one of two free throws by Heytvelt gave Gonzaga their final lead of the game with 3:44 remaining, 57-56.

From that point, the Lions out did one of the best free throw shooting teams in the nation, hitting their final nine points from the charity stripe. Miller was fouled by Pargo with 3:01 on the clock and hit both to give LMU a 58-57 lead. It proved to be the game winner.

After a Knight rebound on a Matt Bouldin miss, he was fouled and hit both free throws to give LMU a 60-57 lead. On the next possession, LMU forced Gonzaga into a tough three-pointer by Bouldin and Knight made the board with 1:11 remaining.

LMU put a tighter grip on the game as Knight got an offensive rebounds off his own miss with 34 seconds remaining, forcing Gonzaga to foul. Montgomery hit one of two to give LMU a two possession lead with :31 remaining.

"That was the biggest free throw of my life," said Montgomery, who added two assists, two rebounds and a steal. "We knew if we played the way we are capable of, and execute the way we have been practicing we could get this one."

The Lions went 6-for-6 in the final 23 seconds to win it. Montgomery hit a pair and Miller hit the last four. They finished 22-for-29 at the stripe (75.9 percent) while Gonzaga went 7-for-14, a mirror image of how they have done on the season. Gonzaga came into the game tops in the WCC and one of the best nationally at 78.1 percent while LMU entered ranked seventh in the eight-team conference at 67.2 percent.

"We have been gaining confidence as a team the last several weeks, and that was evident at the line," said Tention. "We did a really good job of putting ourselves in the position to go to the line by being patient in our offense."

While the Lions offense finished the game shooting just 38.8 percent, LMU held the league's best shooting team to 44.2 percent and nearly 20 points below their average. The Lions scored 11 points off 14 Gonzaga turnovers as junior Damian Martin added three steals with his four assists and eight rebounds. He also helped the Lions hold WCC leading scorer Derick Raivio to seven points below his average with 11.

LMU will head to the road for three straight, taking on San Diego on Saturday, Feb. 10 at 4 p.m.

San Diego - 76
Saint Mary's - 72

MORAGA, Calif. (AP) - Brandon Johnson scored six straight points to push San Diego past a tie and help the Toreros log a 76-72 victory over Saint Mary's on Monday night.

Johnson finished with a game-high 18 points as the Toreros (14-10, 4-5 West Coast Conference) avenged an 85-78 home loss earlier this year.

Diamon Simpson led Saint Mary's (13-12, 5-4) with 17 points, as the Gaels lost their third of the past four home games and fell out of a tie for first in the conference.

After the Gaels overcame a 15-point deficit to tie the game, Brett Collins' two free throws, followed by two more free throws from Johnson with 5:05 to play. Johnson then banked in a six-footer and scored on a layup as San Diego quickly rebuilt its lead.

Saint Mary's missed two 3-point attempts in the final 15 seconds that would have tied the game before Ross DeRogatis hit a free throw with 2.5 seconds left to give San Diego its final margin.

Gyno Pomare had 16, Ray Murdock 15 and Nir Cohen 10 points and 10 rebounds for San Diego, which built a 41-33 first-half lead, thanks in part to a 21-12 rebounding advantage. San Diego ended with a 40-38 rebounding advantage.

Saint Mary's came back from a 55-40 deficit with balanced scoring, but two turnovers and a missed 3-point attempt after it tied the game allowed San Diego to score eight straight points and build an insurmountable lead.

Collins had 14, Wayne Hunter 12 and Tron Smith 11 for the Gaels.

Santa Clara - 74
San Francisco - 62

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) - Danny Pariseau hit back-to-back 3-pointers on the way to eight straight points in the closing minutes and 19 total, leading Santa Clara past San Francisco 74-62 on Monday night.

Sean Denison had 18 points and a career-high 16 rebounds and Brody Angley added 13 points and five assists in the third straight win and sixth in seven for the Broncos (17-7, 7-2 WCC), who swept the regular-season series against their longtime Bay Area rival for the first time since the 2000-01 season.

Santa Clara also won, 61-58, at San Francisco on Jan. 22. This is the Broncos' best start in the West Coast Conference since beginning 13-1 during the 1994-95 season.

Alan Wiggins dunked with 4:23 left for his 1,000th career point, but soon after teammate Armondo Surratt went down grabbing his left knee and grimacing in pain and was helped off the court with 3:59 to go.

Wiggins finished with 20 points and 11 boards and Surratt had 12 points and four assists before the injury.

Danny Cavic's 3-pointer pulled the Dons within 60-57 with 3:18 left, then Scott Dougherty hit from long range on the other end for Santa Clara. Pariseau made the first of his two straight 3s at 1:41 and finished 5-for-7 from long range.

It was an impressive victory in the second-to-last home game for retiring Santa Clara coach Dick Davey, who is in his 15th season as head coach and 30th overall at the school and is one of only four head coaches at Santa Clara since 1950.

After the game, the students cheered Davey and he gave them a thumbs-up.

San Francisco used an 8-0 run midway through the second half to pull within six. The Dons trailed by 17 early in the half but Surratt hit back-to-back 3-pointers to start the comeback attempt.

After Manny Quezada converted two free throws with 6:03 to play that cut it to 57-50, Angley hit a quick 3.

San Francisco (9-15, 5-4) had played six conference games that were decided on the final possession, but the Dons didn't do enough right in this one to have that chance. They lost on the road in WCC play for only the second time in six games, with their only other defeat away from Memorial Gym coming at first-place Gonzaga 72-56 on Jan. 27.

The Broncos used a 14-3 run early, with four straight 3-pointers and three of those by Pariseau, to build a 25-11 lead. San Francisco went more than eight minutes without a field goal after Surratt's 3 at 15:33.

Santa Clara made 5 of its first 8 3-pointers and also went hard to the boards for an early rebounding advantage that led to second and third chances on offense.

Antonio Kellogg had 11 points and seven rebounds in his second game back after voluntarily taking three games off to focus on his academics.

USF began the game 4-for-16 and Vince Polakovic had two late baskets as the Dons briefly pulled within 10 but then gave up five unanswered points to trail 43-28 at halftime.