Stockton, Calif. - The Pacific men's basketball team dropped a 92-81 home decision to Loyola Marymount on Thursday, Jan. 23. The Tigers fell to 10-8 overall and 1-6 in West Coast Conference play. Loyola Marymount improved to 11-10 and 3-6 in WCC play.
"Tonight's game was a tough one to take," said Head Coach Ron Verlin. "We played great for about 30 of the 40 minutes, but credit to LMU, in the other 10 minutes they won the game. We have to get back in the gym tomorrow and get ready for a very good Pepperdine team."
The Tigers started strong on defense, holding the Lions to an 0-7 start from the field and taking an 8-0 lead in the first three minutes. LMU then outscored the Tigers 10-4 to make it 12-10 with 12:53 to play in the half. A three-pointer by senior Andrew Bock gave the Tigers an 18-13 lead, but the Lions again struck back with an 8-2 run to take the lead for the first time at 21-20 with 7:29 to play in the half. Three-pointers from senior Trevin Harris and freshman David Taylor pushed the Tigers back ahead 26-23, but LMU was able to even it up at 32-32 heading into halftime.
Senior Ross Rivera scored seven points in the three minutes of the second half, helping the Tigers to a 41-36 advantage. After the Tigers built the lead to nine (53-44), the Lions went on 31-8 run over eight minutes to flip it to a 77-62 LMU lead with 5:11 to play. Pacific was 2-14 from the field in that stretch, while the Lions were 10-12. Trailing by 15 a couple of minutes later, the Tigers cut it to nine (81-72) after a pair of three-pointers by junior Aaron Short and freshman T.J. Wallace. But the Tigers would not get any closer as the Lions hit nine of 10 free throws down the stretch.
Rivera led the Tigers with 16 points and six rebounds. Three Tigers joined him in double figures, as seniors Tony Gill (13), Sama Taku (12) and Harris (10) each scored 10 or more. The Tigers shot 39.7% from the field (27-68), while the Lions shot 47.4% (27-57), including 60.7% (17-28) in the second half. Pacific was 6-15 (40.0%) behind the arc, while LMU was 7-14 (50.0%), including making all five three-point attempts in the second half.
The Tigers are next in action with a home game against Pepperdine on Saturday, Jan. 25. The game is scheduled for a 7:00 p.m. start and will be televised by theW.tv.