Waves Have Record-Setting Shooting Effort in Win vs. Denver
Pepperdine plays Indiana State in the consolation final on Saturday at 3 p.m. PT.
Nov. 29, 2013
ANCHORAGE, Alaska - A record-setting shooting performance and 22 points from Stacy Davis lifted the Pepperdine men's basketball team to a 68-56 victory over Denver in a Great Alaska Shootout consolation semifinal on Friday afternoon.
Pepperdine (5-2) made 25 of 35 shots, a remarkable 71.4% field goal percentage. That set a Great Alaska Shootout record and is the second-best single-game mark in program history.
The Waves' reward is a spot in the consolation final on Saturday against Indiana State at 3 p.m. PT / 2 p.m. AT.
Pepperdine was unstoppable on both ends of the floor in the first half and took at 38-15 lead at the break. The Waves led by as many as 24 in the second half, though Denver eventually cut the lead in half by the end of the contest.
Davis (Laveen, Ariz./Fairfax HS) shook off a two-game slump and made eight of nine field goals and six of eight free throws. Davis scored at least 20 points in each of the first four games of the season, then had just seven points in each of the last two before bouncing back today. He was named Player of the Game by the tournament.
Senior forward Brendan Lane (Rocklin, Calif./Rocklin HS/UCLA) joined Davis in double-figures as he scored 12 points to go with five rebounds and five assists.
Though the Waves fared exceptionally well on offense, head coach Marty Wilson praised the defense in a postgame press conference: "Our guys did a great job. It was probably our best job by far in terms of communication. We had team harmony defensively and we knew where we were supposed to be defensively. We did a great job, especially in the first half, of making it tough for them to get easy shots."
The Waves spotted Denver the first five points of the contest, then went on a 38-10 run over the next 17 1/2 minutes. Pepperdine made 15 of 21 shots in the first half (71.4%). Perhaps even more impressively, a day after making 20 costly turnovers against Green Bay, the Waves didn't commit a single turnover until more than 14 minutes had been played against the Pioneers, and Pepperdine only had a total of two in the first half. On the other end of the floor, Denver shot just 27.3% in the first half.
While Pepperdine continued to shoot well in the second half, hitting 71.4% again (10-for-14), the Waves had more trouble holding into the ball and turned it over 13 times. Denver, meanwhile, shot a little better in the second half and made some inroads with offensive rebounds and second-chance points. Although that allowed the Pioneers to close the gap, they would get no closer than 12 points, first with a little more than two minutes left and again at the final buzzer.
Denver, picked to finish in second place in the Summit League, ended the game shooting 33.9% from the field.
Freshman guard Jeremy Major (Pasadena, Calif./Maranatha HS) had six points and seven assists, junior guard Malcolm Brooks (Brooklyn, N.Y./Lamar CC) scored eight points and senior guard Nikolas Skouen (Bergen, Norway/Pratt CC) added seven. Every Wave that attempted a shot made at least half of them.
Pepperdine's school-record field goal percentage is 74.5%, set in December 1979 against Kansas. This was just the second time that the Waves broke the 70% milestone. The former Great Alaska Shootout record was 69.8% by Iowa in the 1986 title game against Northeastern.
Saturday's finale at the Great Alaska Shootout can be heard via WaveCasts at www.pepperdinesports.com with Al Epstein on the call.