Toreros open WCC play on Saturday against Pepperdine
Dec. 26, 2013
GAME #14: The USD Toreros (9-4) begin West Coast Conference play this Saturday, December 28th, with a game at the Pepperdine Waves (7-5). Game time is 5:00 p.m. from Firestone Fieldhouse in Maliu, California.
SERIES RECORD: This will be the 97th meeting between USD and Pepperdine with the Waves owning a commanding 56-40 advantage in the overall series... The Toreros have won the last six meetings over the past two seasons (two wins coming at WCC Tournament)... USD head coach Bill Grier is 12-4 against the Waves since joining the Torero staff for the 2007-08 season... In the last meeting between these two schools, a 62-59 USD win on March 7, 2013, Johnny Dee paced the Toreros with 16 points... In USD's 76-69 home win on March 2, 2013, five Toreros scored in double digits led by Dee's 14 points... On January 12, 2013 in Malibu, USD won 62-50 behind Dee's 17 points and Ken Rancifer's 16 points.
RADIO: All USD home and away games will be broadcast live on ESPN 1700AM with Andy Masur (7th season) bringing you all the action; his pre-game shows air 15 minutes prior to tip-off. The webcast audio stream can also be found at www.usdtoreros.com.
WCC STANDINGS (thru Dec. 25th): Gonzaga (10-2), University of the Pacific (9-2), Saint Mary's College (9-3), San Diego (9-4), Portland (8-4), Loyola Marymount (8-4), BYU (8-5), Pepperdine (7-5), San Francisco (7-5), Santa Clara (7-6).
COACH GRIER (7TH YEAR): Coach Bill Grier (Oregon, 1990) is in his seventh season at the helm of the USD program... He enters the Pepperdine game with a 9-4 record, and the team's 7-1 mark thru the first eight games was only matched by the 2000-01 Torero team since San Diego joined the NCAA Division I ranks in 1979-80... Last year's squad finished 16-18 overall and advanced to the semifinals of the WCC Tournament where they just missed out on advancing to the title game... The Toreros were playing their best basketball down the stretch highlighted by two wins over BYU.
TORERO TIDBITS: USD enters WCC play with 9 wins for the first time since the 2006-07 season (9-5)... Through games of Dec. 22nd, USD ranked in the top-20 in NCAA Division I stats for field goal percentage defense (#10, .377), scoring defense (#16, 60.8 ppg), and three-point field goal percentage defense (#17, .278)... USD ranks first in all three of these statistics among WCC schools... With 1,168 career points, junior guard Johnny Dee ranks 16th all-time on USD's scoring list - his next targets are #15 Ken Leslie with 1,174 points (1956-59), and #13 Gylan Dottin (1988-93) and #13 Brian Miles (1995-98), both with 1,187 points... Dee also owns 195 made three-pointers on 501 attempts (38.9%); the Torero record for made threes in a career is 228 by Ross DeRogatis (2004-07) on 551 attempts (41.3%)... Junior guard Christopher Anderson leads the WCC in assists (6.3 apg) and ranks 16th in the nation... He is 4th all-time for Toreros in the assist department at 426... Sitting at #3 is USD Hall of Famer Stan Washington (451; 1971-74), while #2 is current Miami Heat assistant coach David Fizdale (465, 1992-96)... USD has started the same lineup in all thirteen games so far (Dee, Anderson, Duda Sanadze, Jito Kok and Dennis Kramer)... They have accounted for 759 of the team's 923 points (82.2%)... Four of the starters are averaging in double-digit scoring - Dee (17.7 ppg), Sanadze (12.4 ppg), Anderson (11.3 ppg) and Kramer (11.3 ppg)... Kramer leads the team in rebounding (7.2) and is followed in that department by Thomas Jacobs (4.5 rpg) off the bench...Over the past five games in which USD has gone 3-2, threeToreros have averaged in double-digit scoring - Dee (19.2 ppg), Sanadze (12.6 ppg) and Kramer (12.4 ppg)... Anderson is right behind at 9.8 ppg while dishing out 7.2 assists and collecting 2.4 steals... During that same 5-game stretch USD has averaged 68.4 points while surrendering 61.8 ppg.
A LOOK AHEAD: USD plays at Loyola Marymount on Monday, December 30th, with a 7:00 p.m. game at Gersten Pavilion... USD has won three straight over LMU, including both games last season... 78-70 in San Diego, and 69-68 in overtime at LMU on Christopher Anderson's buzzer beating layup.
TOREROS ON THE ROAD: Saturday's game at Pepperdine will be the first of three straight WCC road games for the Toreros... USD will play seven of their first nine WCC games on the road... This season USD owns a record of 2-1 in "true" away games, and is 4-2 overall in games played away from the Jenny Craig Pavilion... In its three "true" road games, USD beat Morgan State (68-61) and Northern Kentucky (75-44), with the loss coming at New Mexico (73-66)... For those three games USD averaged 69.7 ppg while limiting its opponents to 59.3... Johnny Dee averaged 17.7 ppg in those three road games... Over the six road games USD is averaging 70.2 ppg while limiting its opponents to 63.2 ppg (+7.0 scoring margin)... Dee (17.3 ppg) and Duda Sanadze (13.2 ppg) lead the way in games away from the Jenny Craig Pavilion.
SCOUTING THE PEPPERDINE WAVES: The Pepperdine Waves enter West Coast Conference play with an overall record of 7-5... Pepperdine closed out their nonconference slate with a 76-64 home win over Houston Baptist on December 21st... Forwards Brendan Lane (21 points, 11 rebounds) and Stacy Davis (21 points, 10 rebounds) became the first pair of Waves to post 20-point, 10-rebound efforts in the same game in nearly 25 years... On Saturday Pepperdine will be opening WCC play at home for the seventh straight season and 10th time in 11 years... The game will be the first of four WCC games for Pepperdine in a span of eight days (BYU on 12/30; at SCU on 1/2; at USF on 1/4)... Heading into WCC play the Waves have three players averaging in double digits - forward Stacy Davis (16.3 ppg, 7.0 rpg), forward Brendan Lane (14.9 ppg, 8.6 rpg) and guard Jeremy Major (11.4 ppg, 4.7 assists)... Lane sat out last season after transferring from UCLA and this will be his one year with the Waves... Stacy Davis was named to the 2013-14 preseason All-WCC first team after being named the 2012-13 WCC Newcomer of the Year during his freshman season... Head Coach Marty Wilson is in his third season guiding the Waves basketball program.