Malibu, Calif. – The Pacific men's basketball team dropped an 80-69 decision at Pepperdine on Thursday, Feb. 6 at Firestone Fieldhouse. The Tigers fell to 12-10 overall and 3-8 in West Coast Conference action. The Waves are now 14-10 overall and 7-5 in WCC play.
"A slow start tonight really hurt us and we were playing catch up the rest of the game," said Head Coach Ron Verlin. "I really liked the way we played when were making runs to get back into the game, but we need to do that from the start."
Pacific took an early 4-2 lead on inside jumpers by seniors Khalil Kelley and Tony Gill. The Waves responded with a 14-2 run, hitting seven of nine shots to take a 17-6 lead with 12:15 left in the half. A three-point play by senior Trevin Harris and a layup by freshman T.J. Wallace cut the lead to 17-11. Pepperdine then exploded for a 17-5 run in which it hit six of eight from the field to take a 34-16 lead with 4:07 remaining. The Tigers finished the half strong, outscoring the Waves 14-4 over the final 3:20 to trail 40-32 at the break. Pacific was 7-8 from the free throw line and hit three three-pointers, including a trey from Bock with :03 left.
A three-pointer from Gill cut the lead back to five (42-37) with 18:03 left in the game, but the Waves pulled ahead again. They built the lead back up to 12 (57-45) over the next five minutes and led by 11 (63-52) with 8:57 to go. That was when the Tigers made their biggest push. Pacific outscored Pepperdine 10-3 over the next 3+ minutes, getting a trio of three-pointers from Bock, Gill and junior Aaron Short to make it 66-62 with just 5:20 to play. The Waves then hit seven straight free throws while the Tigers missed three shot attempts and a free throw to give Pepperdine a 74-62 lead with 2:24 remaining. The Tigers did not get closer then seven the rest of the way.
Bock and Wallace each scored 15 points to lead the Tigers. Gill scored 12 and Kelley added 10 points. Pacific shot just 38.6% from the field, while the Waves were at 51.0% for the game.
The Tigers are next in action with a road game at Loyola Marymount on Saturday, Feb. 8. Tipoff is set for 4:00 p.m. for the game that will be available on http://theW.tv.