Tigers Drop Tough Overtime Contest At Home

T.J. Wallace (photo by keithsanpeiphoto.com)
T.J. Wallace (photo by keithsanpeiphoto.com)

Stockton, Calif. - The Pacific men's basketball team lost a tough one at home to Loyola Marymount by a count of 76-71 in overtime on Saturday, Jan. 31. The Tigers dropped to 10-13, 2-9 in WCC action, while LMU improved to 7-16 and 3-8 in WCC play.

"I thought at times in the game we were really in control," said Head Coach Ron Verlin. "LMU did a good job in the second half defensively and we had some key turnovers. I really have to commend T.J. even playing today, after battling the flu the last few days."

After a scoreless first two minutes, the Lions scored the first basket on a short jumper by Godwin Okonji. Alec Kobre scored the next five points for the Tigers, before the Lions scored four straight to retake the lead at 6-5 with 16:15 left. T.J. Wallace came off the bench to score five straight points for the Tigers to take the lead back at 10-6 with 13:58 remaining. A three-pointer by LMU's David Humphries cut it to 10-9. Kobre then jump-started a 12-2 run with a three-pointer as the Tigers took a 22-11 with 6:38 to play in the half. Evan Payne scored on a pair of jumpers as the Lions scored the next points to chop the Tigers' lead down to 22-17. Jumpers from Jacob Lampkin and Gabriel Aguirre took the lead back to 26-17 with 4:11 to go. Neither team missed from the field over the final 4:30. And 8-2 LMU run took the lead down to 28-25, but another Kobre three-pointer with :01 left gave the Tigers a 34-27 halftime lead.

A three-pointer by LMU's David Humphries started the second half, but the Tigers scored eight of the next 10 points to take a 42-32 lead with 17:45 left. Humphries hit another three in a 7-0 stretch to cut the Tigers' lead to 42-39 just three minutes later. Wallace then scored the last five points of a 10-2 run to give Pacific a 52-41 lead with 10:21 to go. The Lions answered with another 7-0 run to cut it back to four (52-48) with 7:39 remaining. A pair of free throws by Eric Thompson pushed the lead back to 54-48, but LMU's Marin Mornar scored four straight on a free throw and a three-pointer to cut it to 54-52 with 6:07 left. Lampkin scored on a layup and T.J. Wallace hit a pair of free throws to keep the lead at four (58-54) with 2:38 left.

Okonji missed the front of a one and one, giving the Tigers the ball back. A Tiger turnover led to an LMU basket to cut it to 58-56 with 1:31 to play. Another Tiger turnover gave the ball back to the Lions. Evan Payne scored on a layup with :46 left to even the game at 58-58. A Tiger miss followed by a tie up under the LMU basket gave the Tigers the ball with :09 left. Robinson missed a long three-pointer to send the game overtime.

The Tigers opened overtime with a three-pointer by Kobre. LMU then scored seven straight to take a 65-61 lead with 3:13 left. Pacific cut it back to 65-63 with a basket by Eric Thompson. A pair of free throws by Payne made it 67-63, before a right wing three from David Taylor made it a 67-66 LMU lead. Two more free throws from Payne took it to 69-66. Aguirre then scored on a tip-in to cut the LMU lead to 69-68 with one minute left. LMU took advantage of another Tiger turnover and an offensive rebound to score five straight and had a 74-68 lead with :13 left. Wallace hit a three-pointer, but the Lions put the game away with a pair of free throws.

Battling the flu, Wallace scored 18 points to lead the Tigers. Kobre added 17 points and Thompson scored 12. The Tigers shot 46.4% for the game, but just 38.9% in the second half. LMU shot only 38.5% in the second half, but were at 51.4% in the second half and overtime combined. The Lions held a 39-32 rebounding edge, including 17 offensive boards that turned into 17 second chance points. The Tigers had 15 turnovers that allowed for LMU's 27 points off of turnovers.

The Tigers are next in action with a road game at Saint Mary's on Saturday, Feb. 7. The game is set for a 7:00 p.m. start and will be televised by theW.tv.