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WCC Men's Basketball Weekly Notes

Feb. 2, 2010

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WCC TEAMS BEGIN SECOND HALF OF CONFERENCE PLAY

WCC men's basketball teams begin the second half of conference play this week. Gonzaga and Saint Mary's are tied atop the WCC standings with identical 6-1 league records, while Portland is just one game back of the leaders at 5-2 in conference play. Pepperdine and San Francisco are tied for fourth place with 3-4 league marks, while LMU and San Diego are tied for sixth with 2-5 WCC records and Santa Clara is eighth at 1-6 in conference play.

UPCOMING SCHEDULE

All Times PST

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 4
TEAMS LOCATION
TIME
TELEVISION
San Francisco at San Diego San Diego, CA
7:00 PM
Portland at Gonzaga Spokane, WA
8:00 PM
ESPN2/ESPN360/ESPN Australia HD/Brazil HD
Santa Clara at Saint Mary's Moraga, CA
8:30 PM
Comcast California/Comcast Northwest/ESPN Pacific Rim
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 6
TEAMS LOCATION
TIME
RECAP
Gonzaga at Memphis Memphis, TN
1:00 PM
ESPN2/ESPN360.com
Santa Clara at San Diego San Diego, CA
5:30 PM
Channel 4 SD/Comcast Sports Bay Area Plus
Pepperdine at Loyola Marymount Los Angeles, CA
7:30 PM
San Francisco at Saint Mary's Moraga, CA
8:00 PM
Comcast California/Comcast Northwest/ESPN Pacific Rim

AROUND THE WCC

WCC Player of the Week
San Francisco's Dior Lowhorn Earns Weekly Honor
San Francisco's Dior Lowhorn powered USF to a thrilling overtime victory against No. 13/8 Gonzaga with a game-high 22 points - 17 coming after halftime. Lowhorn nailed a clutch 3-pointer to force overtime against Gonzaga and sealed it with two from deep in overtime. For the week, Lowhorn averaged 17 points on .480 (12-25) from the field to go along with nine rebounds per game. Lowhorn became the eighth player to surpass 1,600 career points in the Green and Gold, finishing with 1,608.

Also Nominated: Chris Manresa, USD; Mickey McConnell, SMC; Jared Stohl, POR

WCCTV Presents The Road To Las Vegas
Each week, the Road To Las Vegas will chronicle each WCC men's and women's basketball team's journey through conference play culminating with the 2010 Zappos.com WCC Basketball Championships at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas on March 5-8. With your host George Devine, the Road To Las Vegas will provide highlights from the previous week's action, have exclusive interviews with players, coaches, and key basketball personnel, as well as take a look at the upcoming matchups. The WCC's first-ever weekly web-based feature show will provide fans with unprecedented coverage of WCC men's and women's basketball. Check back each week as new episodes will be posted exclusive on WCCsports.com and on the WCC's official YouTube page (www.youtube.com/WCCsports).

WCC Best In The West Against The BCS
West Coast Conference teams are proving to be formidable opponents for teams from the BCS conferences. Of the four conferences primarily located in the West Region - WCC, Pac-10, Big West, and WAC - the WCC owns the most wins and the highest winning percentage against teams from the six BCS conferences with a 14-17 record. The Pac-10 is second with a 9-24 (.272) mark against teams from other BCS conferences, followed by the Big West (2-19; .095), and the WAC (0-7).


CONFERENCERECORD VS. BCS SCHOOLSPERCENTAGE

1. WEST COAST14-17.4522. Pacific-109-24.2723. Big West2-19.0954. Western Athletic0-7.000

2009-10 WCC Preseason All-Conference Team
If the WCC preseason all-conference team is any indication, it should be a very competitive season as all eight conference schools landed at least one player on the team. Gonzaga and Portland led the way with each team landing two players on the team. In addition, guard play in the WCC should be exciting to watch as eight of the 10 players named to the team play in the backcourt.

2009-10 WCC Men's Basketball Preseason All-Conference
Keion Bell, PEP
Matt Bouldin, GON
T.J. Campbell, POR
Jared DuBois, LMU
Kevin Foster, SCU
Steven Gray, GON
Brandon Johnson, USD
Dior Lowhorn, USF
Nik Raivio, POR
Omar Samhan, SMC

Zappos.com Named Title Sponsor of the WCC Basketball Championships
The West Coast Conference (WCC) and its multi-media rights partner, IMG College, announced Zappos.com as the official title sponsor of the WCC Men's and Women's Basketball Championships. The deal represents the WCC's first-ever title sponsorship. In addition, the WCC and Zappos.com will partner with Soles4Souls to challenge each West Coast Conference campus to collect the most shoes from December to the end of the conference basketball season. The gently used shoes will be distributed internationally through Soles4Souls to individuals in need. Last year's shoe drive resulted in over 5,200 shoes being donated to Soles4Souls by West Coast Conference institutions.

WCC Live To Cover Men's Hoops Season
This season, the West Coast Conference introduced a new internet based radio showcalled "WCC Live" to be hosted by veteran play-by-play announcer Jeff Lampe. The show will feature interviews with coaches and players from around the league as well asspecial guests throughout the year. In addition, fans will be able to participate by dialing in to ask questions of the guests by calling 646-378-1311, submitting questions via a live chat feature or by emailing questions to WCCLive@ymail.com. The program will air live each Wednesday at 8:00 p.m. ---- visit wccsports.com/wcclive for up-to-date guest information.

WCC Tournament To Remain At The Orleans Arena Through 2012
On July 22, 2009, the West Coast Conference and the Orleans Arena announced a three-year contract extension that will keep the WCC Men's and Women's Basketball Championships in Las Vegas through 2012. The extension comes after the West Coast Conference sold out the Orleans Arena for the 2009 WCC Basketball Championships. The 2009 championship, which was the WCC's first-ever at a neutral site, set conference records for both total championship attendance (33,320) and single session championship attendance (7,845).

Gonzaga Edges Portland For Top Spot in 2009-10 WCC Preseason Coaches Poll
Gonzaga was selected as the favorite to capture an unprecedented 10th consecutiveWest Coast Conference men's basketball regular season title in the 2009-10 WCC Preseason Coaches Poll. The Zags received six first place votes and tallied 48 points to narrowly edge out Portland, which received the remaining two first place votes and collected 44 overall points. Saint Mary's was picked third with 34 overall points, followed by San Francisco and Santa Clara, which tied for fourth with 26 points. Rounding out this year's poll were San Diego in sixth place with 21 points, followed by Pepperdine in seventh place with 13 points, and Loyola Marymount in eighth place with 12.

2009-10 WCC Men's Basketball Preseason Coaches Poll
1. Gonzaga - 48 (6)
2. Portland - 44 (2)
3. Saint Mary's - 34
4. San Francisco - 26
Santa Clara - 26
6. San Diego - 21
7. Pepperdine - 13
8. Loyola Marymount - 12


WCC TEAM NOTES

SCHOOL TEAM NOTES

Overall Record: 17-4
WCC Record: 6-1
  • Gonzaga rallied to defeat Santa Clara, 71-64, on Thursday evening, before falling at San Francisco, 81-77, in overtime. Gonzaga's loss at San Francisco was the Zags' first in 28 regular-season WCC games.

  • Senior Matt Bouldin led the Zags all weekend, scoring 19 points against Santa Clara before tossing in 15 points versus San Francisco. Bouldin now has 1,498 career points and ranks 12th on the Bulldogs' all-time scoring chart.

  • Gonzaga has won nine consecutive WCC regular season titles marking the longest current streak in the nation and ranks tied for fourth all-time in the NCAA Division I ranks, tying the University of Kentucky. The Wildcats won nine straight SEC crowns from 1944-52. UCLA's 13 Pacific-10 Conference titles from 1967-79 head the list.

  • Gonzaga hosts Portland (2/4) before traveling to Memphis (2/6) this Saturday.

  • Overall Record: 11-12
    WCC Record: 2-5
  • The Lions picked up their second conference win of the season with a 68-65 victory over San Diego, before dropping an 85-67 decision to Saint Mary's.

  • Freshman Given Kalipinde scored a career-high 15 points on 5-for-7 shooting from the three-point line and sophomore Kevin Young added 21 points as the Lions overcame second-half deficits of 11 and seven points to down the Toreros.

  • Young scored a career-high 27 points and added eight rebounds versus Saint Mary's.

  • The Lions, who do not feature a senior on the roster and are starting three sophomores, a freshman and a junior, already have surpassed their win total of the last two seasons combined.

  • The Lions host Southern California rival Pepperdine (2/6) this weekend.

  • Overall Record: 7-16
    WCC Record: 3-4
  • Pepperdine dropped a pair of home games, falling 88-71 to Saint Mary's and 66-44 to San Diego.

  • Sophomore guard Keion Bell scored a team-high 24 points to go along with seven rebounds, and four assists against the Gaels. Bell scored 20 or more points for the 12th time this season. Bell ranks 29th in the nation in scoring with 19.7 ppg, fifth most among the nation's sophomores.

  • Junior Mychel Thompson added 16 points, five rebounds, three assists against Saint Mary's

  • Pepperdine, which has no seniors and has a roster where 12 of the 16 players are underclassmen, has been led in scoring by its sophomore class in 23 of 23 games this season.

  • The Waves travel to rival Loyola Marymount (2/6) this weekend.

  • Overall Record: 14-7
    WCC Record: 5-2
  • The Portland Pilots extended their winning streak to four games with wins at San Francisco (74-58) and Santa Clara (74-52).

  • The Pilots' leading scorer Nik Raivio missed his fourth straight game with a strained Achilles.

  • Junior guard Jared Stohl became the most prolific three-point shooter in school history, draining 10 three-pointers last week to pass Casey Frandsen on the Portland career charts. Stohl now has 212 career three-pointers.

  • Stohl has started the last four games in the absence of leading scorer Nik Raivio (Achilles' strain) and is averaging 18.5 points in those games.

  • The Pilots travel to Pacific Northwest rival Gonzaga (2/4) in their lone game this week.

  • Overall Record: 19-3
    WCC Record: 6-1
  • Saint Mary's moved into a first place tie with Gonzaga with wins over Pepperdine (88-71) and Loyola Marymount (85-67).

  • Senior center Omar Samhan scored 23 points and tied a career-high with 19 rebounds in the Gaels win at Pepperdine. The 19 rebounds matched the 19 boards he grabbed against Vanderbilt earlier this season.

  • Samhan added 19 points and 13 rebounds against LMU for his WCC-leading 12th double-double of the season, and 35th of his career.

  • Junior guard Mickey McConnell had a career-high 26 points on 10-of-14 shooting from the field in the Gaels' win over Pepperdine.

  • The Gaels host Bay Area rivals Santa Clara (2/4) and San Francisco (2/6) this week.

  • Overall Record: 9-14
    WCC Record: 2-5
  • The Toreros dropped a 71-56 decision at Saint Mary's, but bounced back to defeat Pepperdine, 66-44.

  • Senior guard Brandon Johnson, who is already USD's all-time assists leader with 491 career assists, also ranks second on the Toreros' all-time scoring chart with 1,687 career points. He needs just 39 more points to become the school's all-time leading scorer, passing former teammate Gyno Pomare (1,725). If Johnson becomes USD's all-time leading scorer, he would become the only player in WCC history to be his school's career points and assists leader.

  • Freshman Chris Manresa set a new career-high in points for the third game in a row with his 17-point output against Pepperdine, while also grabbing a career-high 10 rebounds for his first career double-double.

  • The Toreros host Bay Area foes San Francisco (2/4) and Santa Clara (2/6) this week.

  • Overall Record: 8-14
    WCC Record: 3-4
  • San Francisco dropped a 74-58 decision to Portland on Thursday evening before bouncing back to upset No. 8 Gonzaga, 81-77, in overtime.

  • Senior forward Dior Lowhorn tossed in a game-high 22 points, including 17 in the second half, to lead the Dons to the upset over the Bulldogs. It was the 47th 20-plus point night of Lowhorn's distinguished career and the 11th of 2009-10. Lowhorn became the eighth player to surpass 1,600 career points in the Green and Gold, finishing with 1,608. Lowhorn ranks eighth on the all-time scoring list 29 points from passing Naismith Hall-of-Famer Bill Russell (1953-56), who finished with 1,636.

  • The win over Gonzaga was USF Head Coach Rex Walters' 50th career win and first over a ranked opponent.

  • The Dons begin the second half of WCC play at San Diego (2/4) and at Saint Mary's (2/6).

  • Overall Record: 9-15
    WCC Record: 1-6
  • The Broncos dropped a hard-fought 71-64 decision to No. 8 Gonzaga on Thursday evening, before falling to Portland, 74-52.

  • SCU is the seventh-youngest team in the country and the youngest in the WCC at 1.87, according to statsheet.com. Of the just nine active players on scholarship this year, Santa Clara has zero seniors, three juniors, two sophomores and four freshmen.

  • Sophomore guard Kevin Foster, the 2008-09 WCC Co-Newcomer of the Year, is out indefinitely with a right foot injury.

  • Freshman Robert Smith is enjoying a standout season ranking second on the team and third among all WCC freshmen in scoring with 12.3 ppg.

  • The Broncos travel to Bay Area rival Saint Mary's (2/4) and San Diego (2/6) this week.