Davis Stars, But Men's Hoops Falls at WCC Tournament to USD

Stacy Davis

March 8, 2013

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LAS VEGAS, Nev. - Stacy Davis showed everyone why he was named the West Coast Conference Newcomer of the Year, but his play alone wasn't enough as the Pepperdine men's basketball team fell to San Diego, 62-59, on Thursday in the second round of the WCC Championships at the Orleans Arena.

Davis (Laveen, Ariz./Fairfax HS), a freshman forward, recorded his sixth double-double of the season with 19 points and 11 rebounds. He went 9-for-11 from the foul line and 16 of his points came in the second half. Davis helped Pepperdine rally in the second half, giving the Waves a chance to tie at the end of the game, but a near-half-court attempt at the buzzer fell short.

This was the seventh time that the Waves (12-18) and the Toreros (15-17) have met at the WCC Championships in the last nine years. It's the sixth time during that span that USD has ended Pepperdine's season.

As was the case multiple times over the course of the season, turnovers cost the Waves. Though the overall count was almost even (18 by Pepperdine, 17 by USD), the Toreros did a much better job converting them, taking a 27-15 edge in points-off-turnovers. That was enough to negate a slim shooting edge by Pepperdine, 43.8% to 41.2%.

"They zoned us, and normally we're pretty good against the zone," Pepperdine Coach Marty Wilson said. "Very few teams have zoned us this year. We got stagnant and started standing around, became passive and stopped attacking. Late in the game we got back into it, but that was the difference. We got away from things that we wanted to do."

The Waves were hot early, jumping out to a double-digit lead at 19-9 after a three-pointer by senior guard Lorne Jackson (Simi Valley, Calif./Simi Valley HS) with nine minutes left in the half. It was still a 10-point lead at 28-18 with four minutes to go after junior guard Nikolas Skouen (Bergen, Norway/Pratt CC) nailed a three-pointer.

But the Toreros finished the half on a 14-1 run to go into the break with a 32-29 advantage, and quickly built an eight-point lead at 39-31.

The teams would then trade 7-0 runs, as the Waves got back to within one point at 39-38, but USD then went back in front 46-38.

The Waves got it down to a two-point game at 53-51 with more than four minutes left, but the Toreros went on another 7-0 run to pull ahead 60-51 and take their largest lead of the game with two minutes to go.

USD struggled from the line down the stretch, giving Pepperdine a chance. Davis made a three-point play, and then Jackson sank a three-pointer, cutting the deficit to three at 60-57 with 30 seconds left. The Waves got the ball back after a turnover, but missed what would have been a game-tying three pointer.

After the Toreros made one free throw, Jackson was fouled on a three-point attempt with 3.0 seconds left. He made the first two and intentionally missed the third, but a lane violation was called on the Waves and it was USD's ball with a 61-59 lead.

The Toreros went 1-for-2 from the line again, giving the Waves one last chance, but a long-distance shot by sophomore guard Jordan Baker (Tempe, Ariz./Tempe HS) fell short.

Jackson, the only senior on the floor who was playing his final game for Pepperdine, scored 10 points. Baker added eight points.

USD got 16 points from Johnny Dee and 10 from Chris Anderson. The Toreros swept all three meetings from the Waves for the second straight year.

"I'm excited about the future of Pepperdine basketball," Wilson said. "We're heading in the right direction. We're going to give our guys a few days off and then we're going to work. We want them to watch conference tournament games, NCAA Tournament games, and use that as motivation to get better, as something to strive for."



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