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WCC Men's Basketball Weekly Notes

Dec. 8, 2009

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West Coast Conference Continues Non-Conference Play

With the conclusion of the fourth week of non-conference play, Gonzaga remains in the top 25 polls, while Saint Mary's continues to receive votes. The Zags rallied from behind to defeat Washington State, before just getting edged out against Wake Forest. The Gaels won both their games at San Jose State and Utah State. Overall, the West Coast Conference is 10-8 against BCS opposition this season, including a 5-3 record against the Pac-10.

Notable games this week include Saint Mary's playing at Oregon, Loyola Marymount traveling to Notre Dame, and Gonzaga taking on Davidson in the Comcast Battle in Seattle.


All Times PST

Fresno State at Pepperdine Malibu, CA
7:00 PM

San Jose State at San Francisco San Francisco, CA
7:00 PM
New Mexico at San Diego San Diego, CA
4:00 PM
Channel 4 San Diego

Augustana at Gonzaga Spokane, WA
6:00 PM
Fox Sports NW

California Baptist at Pepperdine Malibu, CA
7:00 PM
Montana at Loyola Marymount Los Angeles, CA
7:05 PM
Dominican at Santa Clara Santa Clara, CA
8:15 PM
Denver at Portland Portland, OR
1:00 PM
Saint Mary's at Oregon Eugene, OR
1:00 PM
SAN FRANCISCO at Loyola (Chicago) Chicago, IL
1:00 PM
Gonzaga vs. Davidson Seattle, WA
Comcast Battle in Seattle
4:00 PM
Fox Sports NW

Loyola Marymount at Notre Dame South Bend, IN
5:00 PM
San Diego at Boise State Boise, ID
7:00 PM
Portland State at Pepperdine Malibu, CA
4:00 PM


WCC Co-Players of the Month
T.J. Campbell, Portland, G, 5-9, Jr., Phoenix, AZ
Campbell helped lead Portland to its first national ranking in 50 years by averaging 17.0 points, 4.8 assists and 2.0 rebounds. The Pilots went 5-1 for the month against top competition and finished No. 25 in the AP Poll.

Omar Samhan, Saint Mary's, C, 6-11, RSr., San Ramon, CA
Samhan paced the Gaels by averaging a double-double of 19.2 points and 11.7 rebounds. His 19.2 points per game ranked second in the conference while his 11.7 rebounds led the WCC.

Also Nominated: Keion Bell (Pepperdine), Matt Bouldin (Gonzaga), Brandon Johnson (San Diego), Drew Viney (Loyola Marymount)

WCC Co-Players of the Week
Matt Bouldin, Gonzaga, G, 6-5, Sr., Highlands Ranch, CO
Bouldin posted a career-high 28 points versus Washington State to help fuel a second-half comeback. He hit seven 3-pointers against WSU for a career-high and also hit two against Wake Forest. On the week, Bouldin averaged 25.0 points, 4.5 3-pointers made, 4.5 rebounds, and 4.0 assists for the week, while shooting 51.9 percent.

Omar Samhan, Saint Mary's, C, 6-11, RSr., San Ramon, CA
Samhan averaged 17.0 points and 15.0 rebounds to help SMC post a 2-0 record with road wins at San Jose State and Utah State. Samhan also averaged 34.5 minutes, 2.0 blocks, 1.5 assists, and shot 50.0 (15-30) percent from the floor.

This year marks the third consecutive year that the West Coast Conference has had two teams ranked in the Associated Press Top 25 on the same week. Saint Mary's and Gonzaga were both in the top 25 on December 11, 2007 (Gonzaga #19 & Saint Mary's #24) and January 27, 2009 (Gonzaga #20 & Saint Mary's #22).

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 Men's Basketball Returns To The Airwaves "Down Under"
For the second consecutive year, the West Coast Conference has teamed up with ESPNAustralia and ESPN Pacific Rim to televise men's basketball games "Down Under". Thefollowing four games have been confirmed for air in Australia with more games expected to be added to the schedule: San Diego State at Saint Mary's (Nov. 17), Gonzaga at Saint Mary's (Jan. 14), Saint Mary's at Gonzaga (Feb. 11) and Saint Mary's at San Diego (Feb. 18).

WCC Men's Basketball Teams To Make 31 Appearances On ESPN's Family Of Networks
ESPN recently announced its 2009-10 men's basketball schedule which will feature approximately 1,100 games across the networks multiple platforms. The West Coast Conference is among the featured conferences as WCC teams are scheduled to make 31 appearances, including 14 WCC regular season games, on ESPN's family of networks.

Make sure to download the full release to view the full TV schedule.



Overall Record: 6-2
WCC Record: 0-0
  • The Bulldogs are 4-2 this season against teams from the "Power 6" conferences after splitting a pair of home games against Pac-10 and ACC opposition. The Bulldogs opened the week with a 74-69 win over Washington State (6-2) behind 28 points from Matt Bouldin. The Bulldogs rallied for the win on the strength of a 28-11 run over the final 10 minutes, 30 seconds. Gonzaga then dropped a 77-75 decision to Wake Forest (5-2) on Saturday as the Demon Deacons rallied from a 13-point first half deficit to hand the Zags just their fourth all-time loss at the McCarthey Athletic Center.

  • Senior Matt Bouldin earned WCC Co-Player of the Week honors after scoring a career-high 28 points in the win over Washington State. For the week, Bouldin averaged 25.0 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 4.0 assists.

  • The Zags host NCAA Division III Augustana (5-0) on Wednesday and will take on Davidson (2-6, 1-1 Southern Conference) in the Comcast Battle In Seattle on Saturday at Key Arena.

  • Overall Record: 3-6
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • The Lions earned their first home win of the 2009-10 season by defeating NCAA Division II Academy of Art (0-5) 91-72 on Wednesday night. The 91 points scored was LMU's highest output since a 97-point effort against Mercer on Nov. 24, 2007. LMU then dropped a 76-70 decision at Wyoming (4-4), which marked the Lions fifth loss by six points or less this season. Sophomore Kevin Young recorded his first double-double of the season in the loss with 16 points, 12 rebounds and four steals.

  • The Lions do not have a senior on the 2009-10 roster and feature eight freshmen, seven sophomores and three juniors. Two of those freshmen, Edgar Garibay (knee) and Quincy Lawson (hip), will miss the rest of the season with injuries. Sophomore Drew Viney leads the Lions in scoring with 17.3 points per game followed by junior Larry Davis at 13.2 ppg.

  • The Lions, who play seven of their first 11 away from home, host Montana (5-3, 1-1 Big Sky) on Thursday and will visit Notre Dame (8-1) on Saturday.

  • Overall Record: 3-5
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Pepperdine concluded a stretch of five consecutive games away from home with an 83-77 loss at Cal Poly (2-5) on Saturday night. The Waves led 28-9 after 12 minutes, but the Mustangs cut the lead to 10 at the half and outscored the visitors 52-36 over the final 20 minutes to pull away.

  • Sophomore Keion Bell, a 2009-10 WCC Preseason All-Conference Team selection, ranks ninth nationally and first in the conference in scoring at 22.9 points per game. He has scored more than 20 points in six of his eight games (and had 18 in the other two), including a career-high 34 against Monmouth. On the WCC leaderboard, he is also currently first in steals (2.3), fourth in assists (4.3), eighth in field goal percentage (50.4) and 12th in rebounding (5.6).

  • The Waves open a four-game homestand with three games at Firestone Fieldhouse in a six-day span. Pepperdine will take on Fresno State (3-4) on Tuesday, NAIA school California Baptist (6-3, 1-1 GSAC) on Thursday and Portland State (3-4, 1-0 Big Sky) on Sunday afternoon.

  • Overall Record: 5-3
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • The Pilots dropped back-to-back games last week on the heels of earning the school's first national ranking in men's basketball in 50 years. Portland fell at home to crosstown rival Portland State (3-4, 1-0 Big Sky) 86-82 on Wednesday as the Vikings went 15-of-25 from 3-point range. The Pilots then dropped a 68-48 decision at Idaho (5-2) on Sunday in the first of two meetings with the Vandals this season. Portland was held to 32.2 (19-of-59) percent shooting overall and 27.3 (6-of-22) percent from 3-point range.

  • In the first four weeks of the season, junior guard T.J. Campbell has been named WCC Player of the Month once, WCC Player of the Week twice and was named to the All-Tournament Team at the prestigious 76 Classic. Campbell also helped lead Portland to its first national ranking in 50 years by averaging 17.0 points, 4.8 assists and 2.0 rebounds in November.

  • After five days off, the Pilots return home to take on the University of Denver (5-2) on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. at the Chiles Center.

  • Overall Record: 6-1
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Saint Mary's posted a 67-63 road win at Utah State (4-3) on Saturday night that broke the Aggies' 37-game home winning streak. Utah State had not lost at home since March 3, 2007 vs. Fresno State, and had also won 41 consecutive home non-conference games dating back to the 1999-2000 season. Omar Samhan led the Gaels with his fifth double-double of the season and 28th of his career, as he had game-highs of 22 points and 17 rebounds.

  • Saint Mary's fifth-year senior center Omar Samhan earned both WCC Co-Player of the Week and Co-Player of the Month honors on Monday for his role in the Gaels' 6-1 start. For the month of November, Samhan averaged a double-double of 19.2 points and 11.7 rebounds. For the week of Nov. 30-Dec. 6, the Bay Area native averaged 17.0 points and 15.0 rebounds.

  • Saint Mary's looks to sweep this three-game road swing when it visits Oregon (4-3) on Saturday afternoon in Eugene.

  • Overall Record: 4-5
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • The Toreros have lost four in a row after dropping three games in a five-day span last week. San Diego opened the week with a 69-62 home overtime loss to San Diego State in the annual City Championship game. The Toreros then fell 58-55 at UC Riverside on Friday and 69-37 at Fresno State on Sunday. On Sunday, San Diego was without leading scorer Brandon Johnson (coaches decision) and shot just 18.6 (11-of-59) percent from the floor

  • Fifth-year senior guard Brandon Johnson enjoyed a big weekend at the Great Alaska Shootout by averaging 16.7 points, 4.0 assists and 2.7 rebounds en route to All-Tournament Team honors. Johnson, who is second on USD's all-time scoring list with 1,494 points, sparked USD's upset win over nationally-ranked Oklahoma by scoring 18 of his 22 points in the first half.

  • The Toreros, who are in the midst of a stretch of eight of 10 games away from home, host New Mexico (8-0) on Wednesday and visit Boise State (4-3) on Saturday.

  • Overall Record: 2-6
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • BYU (6-1) defeated San Francisco 69-43 on Saturday night in Salt Lake City to send the Dons to their sixth straight loss and fifth in as many tries away from home. San Francisco, who was playing without leading scorer Dior Lowhorn (illness), dressed one senior, one junior, four sophomores and four freshmen.

  • Senior Dior Lowhorn, who was named to the 2009-10 West Coast Conference Preseason All-Conference Team, became the first player to lead the WCC in scoring during conference play in back-to-back seasons since Gonzaga's Jeff Brown accomplished the feat in 1992-93 and 1993-94. Lowhorn, who ranks 14th on USF's all-time scoring list with 1,368 career points, averaged 20.5 points per game in conference play in both 2007-08 and 2008-09. Lowhorn currently leads the Dons in scoring and rebounding with 18.3 points and 5.0 rebounds per game.

  • The Dons, who are in the middle of a stretch of nine of 12 games away from home, host San Jose State (3-3) on Tuesday and travel to Loyola of Chicago (5-2, 1-1 Horizon) on Saturday.

  • Overall Record: 4-4
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Despite the absence of leading scorer Kevin Foster, the Broncos took No. 21/24 UNLV (7-0) to the wire before dropping a 66-63 decision on Saturday night at the Leavey Center. The Broncos, who led by as many as 10 points early in the second half, had a 58-56 advantage with 4:53 remaining but were outscored 10-5 the rest of the way. Marc Trasolini led the Broncos with 22 points, five rebounds and three blocked shots.

  • Sophomore guard Kevin Foster, the West Coast Conference's second-leading scorer this season at 19.8 points per game, is out indefinitely with a right foot injury. Foster has a fracture of the fifth metatarsal that will require surgery in Santa Clara over the holidays. Foster, a 6-foot-2 guard from Katy, Texas, injured his foot in the final minutes of Santa Clara's 79-68 victory at UC Santa Barbara on Dec. 1.

  • The Broncos conclude their brief two-game homestand against NAIA Division II Dominican (2-5) on Friday night at the Leavey Center. Santa Clara is 2-2 at home this season.