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La Sierra (0-6) at Loyola Marymount (4-3)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, December 3rd, 10:30 p.m. (et)

FACTS & STATS: Site: Gersten Pavilion (4,156) -- Los Angeles, California. Television: None. Home Record: La Sierra 0-2, Loyola Marymount 2-3. Away Record: La Sierra 0-3, Loyola Marymount 2-0. Neutral Record: La Sierra 0-1, Loyola Marymount 0-0. Conference Record: La Sierra 0-0, Loyola Marymount 0-0. Series Record: First-ever meeting.

GAME NOTES: The Loyola Marymount Lions are the host team of the Centennial Classic, and they have an outstanding chance to pick up a victory tonight as they take on the La Sierra Golden Eagles.

An NAIA team, La Sierra is still in search of its first victory of the season, as all six games to date have resulted in defeat. Last night, the Golden Eagles were simply no match for North Texas on the opening day of this event, as they fell to the Mean Green by a 92-45 final.

Loyola Marymount carried a three-game win streak into last night's matchup with Columbia, but the host squad simply did not play well enough at the offensive end in a 69-61 loss in that affair. They are now 4-3 overall and have suffered all three of their defeats in front of the home crowd.

This game marks the first-ever meeting between La Sierra and Loyola Marymount on the hardwood.

It isn't hard to identify the reasons why La Sierra was dominated from start to finish in last evening's affair. The Golden Eagles surrendered 53.1 percent shooting from the floor while making good on 30.2 percent of their own field goal attempts. A 52-23 rebounding deficit also hurt the cause, as did 15 turnovers and an 18-8 disadvantage in points from the foul line. La Sierra trailed 45-19 at intermission and was grossly outplayed in the second half as well. Kenneth Penn was the lone bright spot for the Golden Eagles, as he scored 12 points on 6-of-9 shooting from the floor to go along with seven rebounds. The only other double-digit scorer for the squad in the blowout was Aaron Snyder with 11 points, but he needed 12 field goal attempts to reach that mark.

Standout Ashley Hamilton missed last night's game for LMU with a sprained ankle, and he was clearly missed. The Lions shot a lackluster 41.4 percent from the floor in that tilt, including a 27.8 percent effort from three-point range, and they finished with seven assists against 11 turnovers. Anthony Ireland scored 17 points to lead the way in defeat, and Jarred DuBois pitched in 13 points. As for Drew Viney, he tallied 10 points off the bench. The Lions suffered a 36-22 rebounding disadvantage and were outscored 15-8 from the foul line as well. Through seven games, Ireland is scoring 16.1 ppg to go along with team highs of 24 assists and 13 steals. Hamilton has played in jut three outings, but the fact that he is averaging 15.3 ppg suggests that he is a huge part of the team when healthy. LMU is scoring 69.0 ppg while allowing 66.7 ppg to foes.

There is no question that the Lions will cruise past La Sierra tonight. There is no reason why the Golden Eagles should have been invited to play in this event, as they are grossly outclassed even by this mediocre field.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Loyola Marymount 88, La Sierra 53

12/03 10:35:59 ET