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WCC Men's Basketball Weekly Notes

Feb. 10, 2009

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WCC BEGINS SIXTH WEEK OF CONFERENCE PLAY
With just three weeks until the WCC Tournament the regular season title race is coming down to the wire. Just 3.5 games separate the top five teams in the WCC standings. Gonzaga sits atop the standings with a perfect 8-0 record, followed by Portland at 6-2, and Saint Mary's at 6-3. San Diego and Santa Clara enter the week tied for fourth place with identical 5-4 marks. Pepperdine is sixth at 3-5, followed by San Francisco (1-8), and Loyola Marymount (0-8).

Upcoming Schedule

All Times PST

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 12
TEAMS LOCATION
TIME
RECAP
Portland at San Francisco San Francisco, CA 7:00 PM
San Diego at Loyola Marymount Los Angeles, CA 7:00 PM
Santa Clara at Pepperdine Malibu, CA 7:30 PM
Gonzaga at Saint Mary's Moraga, CA 8:00 PM
ESPN2
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 7
TEAMS LOCATION
TIME
RECAP
San Diego at Pepperdine Malibu, CA
5:00 PM
FSN-West
Portland at Saint Mary's Moraga, CA
7:00 PM
CSNCA/CSNNW
Santa Clara at Loyola Marymount Los Angeles, CA
7:30 PM
FSN-PT
Gonzaga at San Francisco San Francisco, CA
8:00 PM
ESPNU

AROUND THE WCC




Saint Mary's Diamon Simpson is just seven rebounds from becoming just the 15th player in WCC history to grab 1,000 career rebounds.


WCC Player of the Week: Santa Clara's John Bryant Earns Weekly Honor
Santa Clara senior center John Bryant averaged 22 points and 17.5 rebounds last week, leading the Broncos to conference wins over San Diego and Saint Mary's. Against the Toreros, Bryant scored his 1500th point and became the second best rebounder in school history. Against the Gaels, Bryant posted 21 points and 15 rebounds to finish with his 19th double-double of the season, second best in the entire country. The Broncos have won six straight and are now tied for fourth place in the WCC.

WCC Freshmen Making An Impact
Though the standout upperclassmen in the WCC have received the majority of the attention, several freshmen have made a significant impact for their respective teams. Santa Clara's Kevin Foster headlines four freshmen ranked in the top 15 in the WCC in scoring during conference play. Foster ranks fifth in the conference with 16.2 ppg in WCC games, followed closely by Pepperdine's Keion Bell, who is averaging 16.1 ppg. LMU's Jared DuBois is 13th in the conference with 13.2 ppg, while Santa Clara's James Rahon is tied for 14th with 12.9 ppg. Just outside the top 15 is LMU's Kevin Young, who is averaging 10.9 ppg, while averaging 7.2 rpg, during conference play.

Saint Mary's Diamon Simpson Nears Rebounding Milestone
Saint Mary's senior forward Diamon Simpson is closing in on a historic rebounding milestone. Simpson, the Gaels' all-time leading rebounder with 993 career boards, needs just seven more rebounds to reach the 1,000 career rebound mark. Simpson would become just the 15th player in WCC history to reach the rebounding mark and the second player this season, joining Santa Clara's John Bryant, who cleared the milestone on Jan. 31st. When Simpson reaches 1,000 career rebounds, the WCC will be the only conference in the country with two active players with 1,000 career boards.


WCC TEAM NOTES

SCHOOL TEAM NOTES

Overall Record: 17-5
WCC Record: 8-0
  • Gonzaga remained unbeaten in conference play with a 93-78 win at Portland on Thursday evening, before falling to No. 14 Memphis, 68-50.

  • Junior Matt Bouldin, the WCC's January Player of the Month, tied his career-high with 26 points to lead all scorers in the Zags' win over Portland. Bouldin has been spectacular during WCC play, averaging 15.8 ppg, 4.2 rpg, and 3.6 rpg, while shooting 54.9 percent from the field.

  • Austin Daye notched his fifth double-double of the season with 14 points and 12 rebounds against UP. Daye ranks second in the WCC in conference games in rebounding with 9.4 rpg.

  • Gonzaga is beating conference opponents by a 22.4 ppg margin.

  • The Zags play at Saint Mary's (2/12) and San Francisco (2/14) this week.
  • Overall Record: 1-23
    WCC Record: 0-8
  • Loyola Marymount fell to rival Pepperdine, 58-43, on Saturday evening.

  • Freshman Kevin Young grabbed a game-high 13 rebounds against the Waves. Young now has 174 boards for the season, an LMU freshman record for rebounds in a single season.

  • Sophomore Vernon Teel led the Lions with 17 points against Pepperdine.

  • The Lions have faced a tremendous amount of adversity this season, with four key players suffering injuries and are down to eight scholarship players.

  • According to statsheet.com, LMU has the 24th youngest roster in the country.

  • LMU hosts San Diego (2/12) and Santa Clara (2/14) this week.
  • Overall Record: 6-18
    WCC Record: 3-5
  • The Waves picked up their third conference win of the season, defeating rival Loyola Marymount, 58-43, on Saturday.

  • Freshman guard Keion Bell collected his second career double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds in the Waves' win over LMU. He scored in double-figures for the sixth straight game and the seventh time in eight conference games. Bell has been outstanding during conference play, ranking sixth in the WCC in scoring with 16.1 ppg to go along with 5.9 rpg, 2.1 apg, 1.6 spg, while ranking eighth in field goal percentage with a 49.5 percent clip.

  • Of the 12 players that saw action for the Waves against Loyola Marymount, nine were freshmen or sophomores and seven weren't on the roster last year. According to statsheet.com, the Waves have the eighth youngest team in the nation.

  • The Waves host Santa Clara (2/12) and San Diego (2/14) this week.
  • Overall Record: 15-8
    WCC Record: 6-2
  • The Pilots fell to 15-8 overall and 6-2 in WCC play with a 93-78 loss to No. 18 Gonzaga at the Chiles Center last week. The Pilots are still second in the conference standings with a 6-2 WCC record.

  • Despite the loss, the Pilots are still enjoying one of the best seasons in recent memory. Portland's 15 wins are the program's most since finishing with a 19-11 record and advancing to the NCAA Tournament in 1996.

  • The Pilots were led by junior guards T.J. Campbell and Nik Raivio, who each tossed in 19 points against Gonzaga. Campbell has made an immediate impact in his first season on the Bluff, leading the WCC in assists (4.75) and three-point accuracy (.618) during conference play.

  • Portland hits the road this week to play at Bay Area foes San Francisco (2/12) and Saint Mary's (2/14).
  • Overall Record: 19-4
    WCC Record: 6-3
  • Saint Mary's earned a 79-58 win over Bay Area rival San Francisco on Thursday evening, before falling to Santa Clara, 70-52.

  • Sophomore guard Patrick Mills recently had surgery last week to repair two broken bones in his right hand and will be sidelined for the next three-to-four weeks.

  • Senior Diamon Simpson, already the Gaels' all-time leading rebounder with 993 boards, needs just seven more rebounds to become just the 15th player in WCC history to reach 1,000 career rebounds.

  • Omar Samhan grabbed 15 rebounds, nine on the offensive end, against Santa Clara. Samhan leads the WCC in offensive rebounds with 4.00 orpg.

  • The Gaels host No. 19 Gonzaga (2/12) and Portland (2/14) this week.
  • Overall Record: 13-11
    WCC Record: 5-4
  • The Toreros dropped a 64-62 overtime decision to Santa Clara on Thursday, before bouncing back to defeat San Francisco, 73-63.

  • San Diego's 13-11 record is exactly where the Toreros were at this point last season.

  • For WCC games only, USD as a team ranks first in turnover margin (+4.0) and second in scoring defense (59.0 ppg).

  • Trumaine Johnson matched his career-high with 22 points against Santa Clara.

  • It was announced last week that the Toreros will host the University of the Pacific Tigers in this year's seventh annual ESPNU BracketBusters game on Saturday, February 21st.

  • San Diego plays at Loyola Marymount (2/12) and Pepperdine (2/14) this week.
  • Overall Record: 9-15
    WCC Record: 1-8
  • San Francisco fell at Saint Mary's, 79-58, before dropping a 73-63 decision at San Diego on Saturday.

  • Junior forward Dior Lowhorn led the Dons with 22 points to go along with a game-high 12 rebounds for his third double-double of the season in USF's setback at San Diego. Lowhorn leads the WCC and ranks 27th in the nation in scoring with 20.0 ppg.

  • Lowhorn matched Bill Russell as the fastest USF player to score 1,000 career points, in the Dons' game versus Portland on January 15. Lowhorn reached the 1,000 point milestone in his 49th career game in the Green and Gold. Russell tallied his 1,000th career point in the 1955 NCAA Tournament Semifinals against Colorado. Lowhorn now has 1,346 career points (230 points at Texas Tech).

  • The Dons host Portland (2/12) and No. 19 Gonzaga (2/14) this week.
  • Overall Record: 13-13
    WCC Record: 5-4
  • The Broncos extended their winning streak to six straight, edging San Diego, 64-62, in overtime, before downing Saint Mary's, 70-52.

  • Senior center John Bryant turned in yet another monster week scoring a game-high 23 points to go along with a game-best 20 rebounds in the win over USD, before tossing in 21 points to go along with 15 boards in SCU's win over Saint Mary's. Bryant now has six 20+ rebound games this season, the most in the country. Bryant leads the nation in total rebounds for the season with 358, followed closely by Oklahoma's Blake Griffin, who has 336.

  • Freshman guard Kevin Foster finished with a game-high 26 points in the Broncos' win over Saint Mary's. Foster has been outstanding during conference play, leading all WCC freshmen in scoring with 16.2 ppg to go along with 2.9 apg and 1.2 spg.

  • The Broncos travel to Pepperdine (2/12) and Loyola Marymount (2/14) this week.