Men's Hoops Pounds LMU, 87-64
The Waves won their first game in the WCC and improved to 7-14, 1-4. The Lions dropped to 4-17, 1-4, and lost their 10th straight game in
“We had a great week of practice,” said Pepperdine interim coach Eric Bridgeland, who earned his first victory. “Everyone worked so hard. We had a sense of urgency because we knew we needed to win this game. We expected to win because of how hard we worked. I’m so happy for our guys. They earned this one.”
Freshman forward Malcolm Thomas (
LMU got a double-double from Orlando Johnson as he had 17 points and 11 rebounds, while Shawn Deadwiler also scored 17 points.
The Lions scored the first three points of the game, but that was their largest lead. The Waves took the lead for good at 8-7 with 14:13 left in the first half on a driving jumper by Holmes. Later, with a 13-12 lead, the Waves went on a 12-0 run, which included a three-pointer and a tip-in by Thompson. That made it 25-12 with less than six minutes to play.
Pepperdine’s largest lead of the first half was 18 points, and the Waves went into halftime with a 39-23 lead. It was only the third time in 21 games that Pepperdine has led at halftime.
The second half saw the Waves take another 18-point lead at 59-41 following a three-pointer and two free throws from Shelley. LMU’s Johnson scored seven points in a 9-2 run that shrunk the lead down to 61-50. The Lions had a couple of chances to get Pepperdine’s lead into single-digits but couldn’t take advantage. The Waves went on a 9-2 run of their own, which included a lay-up and a three-pointer by Holmes, to go back up 70-52 with under six minutes left.
Tucker took over from there, scoring 11 of Pepperdine’s next 13 points, punctuated by a drive through the lane and a massive two-handed jam, making the score 83-58 with 1:44 to play.
The Waves shot 66.7% from the field in the second half and finished at 55.9% for the game, their third-best shooting performance of the season. LMU shot just 37.3%, Pepperdine’s second-best defensive performance this season. Although the turnover figures were close (LMU’s 19 to Pepperdine’s 16), the Waves had a 26-10 edge on points off turnovers.
Holmes’ 15 points was a career high, as was Thomas’ five blocks.
The Waves continue their three-game homestand next weekend with games on Saturday (Feb. 2) against