March 8, 2013
GAME #33: The USD Toreros (15-17), the WCC's No. 6 seed, will play the No. 3 seed BYU Cougars (21-10 record) this evening in the second quarterfinal contest at approximately 8:30 pm. USD advanced following Thursday's 62-59 win over the Pepperdine Waves. These two teams meet up in the WCC quarterfinal for the second straight season.
SERIES RECORD: This is the 8th meeting between USD and BYU with the Cougars owning a 6-1 series lead... USD snapped a six-game skid with a 74-68 victory the last time these two teams played back on Feb. 7th at the JCP... Johnny Dee, who had sprained his ankle three nights earlier at LMU, scored a team-high 19 points... Ken Rancifer chipped in with 16 points and a career-best 6 assists... BYU won this year's meeting in Provo, 74-57 on January 19th... The Cougars received a game-high 25 points from Tyler Haws; Johnny Dee paced USD with 15 points... BYU won all three games last season in the Cougars first year as a WCC member... USD's best effort against BYU came in the WCC Tournament quarterfinal match-up on March 2nd, with the Cougars holding on for a 73-68 victory (Chris Anderson, 14 points-6 rebounds, 6 assists, 4 steals; Dennis Kramer, 17 points, 9 rebounds)... With 10 seconds to go USD was down just three points and Kramer's 3-point attempt from the top of the key glanced off the rim... BYU closed out the game with two free throws by Noah Hartsock
RADIO-TV: All USD home and away games will be broadcast live on The Mighty 1090 or ESPN 1700 AM with Andy Masur (6th season) bringing you all the action; his pre-game shows air 15 minutes prior to tip-off. Friday's game airs on The Mighty 1090. The game will also be televised on ESPNU (Dave Fleming & Sean Farnham).
WCC STANDINGS (thru Mar. 7th): #1 Gonzaga (16-0 WCC, 29-2), #23 Saint Mary's (14-2, 26-5), Brigham Young (10-6, 21-10), Santa Clara (9-7, 21-10),San Francisco (7-9, 14-16), San Diego (7-9, 15-17), Pepperdine (4-12, 12-18), Portland (4-12, 12-21), Loyola Marymount (1-15, 10-21).
COACH GRIER (6TH YEAR): Coach Bill Grier (Oregon, 1990) is in his sixth season at the helm of the USD program... He enters the BYU contest with a 15-17 mark and 83-110 career record... Last season's squad finished 13-18, winning 4 of its final 6 regular-season WCC games before falling to BYU by just 5 points in WCC quarterfinals... The 2010-11 season was highlighted by a 74-66 home win over #23 Saint Mary's, along with a 67-64 win over Utah... The 2009-10 season was highlighted by wins over Stanford, #25 Oklahoma, Houston and Boise State... His 2008-09 campaign (16-16) was highlighted by road wins over Oregon and Mississippi State... In his rookie year (2007-08) he guided the Toreros to an overall mark of 22-14 and 3rd place finish in the WCC race at 11-3... He guided the Toreros to three wins and the championship title at the WCC Tournament with wins over Pepperdine, Saint Mary's and No. 20 Gonzaga... The Toreros then upset No. 15 UCONN in the NCAA Tourney opener with a 70-69 overtime victory, before falling to Western Kentucky in the second round... His 11 WCC wins were the second most for league wins in a single season in program history... Grier is USD's 11th head coach overall and just the 4th head coach since the Torero program moved to the NCAA Division I ranks in 1979-80... His 22 wins in 2007-08 were also the most by a Torero coach in his first season at USD. In addition to knocking off Kentucky on the road, 81-72, the Toreros earned three wins over Top-25 teams: #21 Saint Mary's, #20 Gonzaga and #15 Connecticut... Bill and his wife, Nicole, have two daughters, Giselle & Ashley.
TOREROS HOLD OFF PEPPERDINE, 62-59: The Toreros held on for a 62-59 victory in 2nd round action at the 2013 WCC Basketball Championships over the Pepperdine Waves. Sophomore guard Johnny Dee scored a team-high 16 points and senior center Chris Manresa chipped in with 9 points and a game-high 11 rebounds in the win. In the first half a Manresa tip-in gave the Toreros an early 7-4 lead out of the gates, but the Waves rallied to take a 10-point lead on three different occasions in the first half, the last coming at the 4:27 mark on a three-pointer from Nikolas Skouen for a 28-18 advantage. From there the Toreros regrouped and closed out the half on a 14-1 run for a 32-29 intermission lead. Johnny Dee heated up and converted on three three-pointers during this run, and Mike Davis chipped in with the other five points. In the second half the Toreros were in control most of the way as they edged ahead by as many as 8 points on numerous occasions in the first 13 minutes of play. Pepperdine's Stacy Davis, the WCC Newcomer of the Year, scored on a basket and later added two free throws to pull the Waves to within two points at 53-51 with 4:19 to go. USD answered with a Dee layup and five points from Christopher Anderson as the Toreros held a comfortable 60-51 advantage with 2:04 left. Pepperdine made one last strong push as Davis scored on an old fashioned three-point play with 1:45 to go and Lorne Green converted a trey with 35 ticks left. USD's Ken Rancifer cashed in on the second of two free throw attempts with 13 seconds left for a 61-57 lead, but Anderson fouled Jackson attempting a three-pointer with six seconds to go. Jackson made the first two to pull within two at 61-59, but missed his last attempt and Manresa grabbed the loose ball and cashed in on one of two charities to ice the victory. For the game Anderson chipped in with 10 points, 5 assists and 5 steals. Pepperdine received a double-double from Davis with 19 points and 10 rebounds.
TORERO TIDBITS: USD's win over Pepperdine last night was their sixth straight victory against the Waves in two seasons... USD is now 5-11 in games played away from the JCP where they finished with a 10-6 home mark... USD's trio of seniors - Chris Manresa, Cameron Miles and Ken Rancifer - are winding down their four-year careers... The Torero seniors head into tonight's contest against BYU with the following career numbers - Manresa (115 games with 61 starts, 873 points, 627 rebounds), Miles (112 games, 348 points, 140 assists, 83 steals) and Rancifer (120 games with 80 starts, 942 points, 273 rebounds, 117 made three-pointers)... With 173 assists on the season, Christopher Anderson has moved into the second spot all-time for a single season (the all-time record is 195, David Fizdale, 1995-96... Fiz is currently an NBA assistant coach with Miami).