Tigers Drop 74-66 Decision To Long Beach State
Pacific dropped a 74-66 decision to Long Beach State on Thursday, February 9th. With the loss, the Tigers fell to 9-14 on the season and 5-6 in Big West Conference play. Long Beach State improved to 18-6 on the season and 11-0 in league play.
Junior Markus Duran opened the scoring for Pacific as the Tigers started with an early 5-0 lead. After the Tigers posted a 6-2 run to take a 13-7 lead, the 49ers scored eight uncontested points to take their first lead of the game (15-13) with 11:48 remaining in the half. Pacific regained the lead off a three-pointer from juniorColin Beatty, but Long Beach State took the lead back at 17-16. Over the next four minutes, both teams battled for a total of eight lead changes before freshman Spencer Llewellyn sparked a 9-2 rally with a three-pointer to give the Tigers a 29-23 lead with 4:46 remaining in the first half. The 49ers countered with an 8-3 run to tie the game at 32-32 with only 36 seconds left on the clock. Pacific let the shot clock wind down in their last possession before junior Lorenzo McCloud drove to the basket and dropped in the layup that gave the Tigers the 34-32 lead going into the break.
After Casper Ware gave the 49ers a 35-34 lead, a two-handed dunk by junior Khalil Kelley opened scoring for the Tigers in the second half. After Kelley dropped in a free throw to give the Tigers a 37-35 lead, the 49ers scored nine straight points to take a 47-39 lead with 15:32 left in the game. Four quick points from McCloud cut the lead to six, but a 49er free throw and a three-pointer from Ware gave Long Beach State a ten point advantage (53-43) with 12:22 remaining. Pacific climbed back, as sophomore Ross Rivera ignited and capped off a 12-2 run that tied the game at 55-55 with 7:53 left on the clock. After the tie, Ware sank three treys in an 11-2 Long Beach State run, putting the Tigers down 66-57 with 5:26 left in the game. Although a 7-2 run brought the Tigers to within five points (68-63) with 3:18 remaining, Ware scored six points from the free throw line to seal the win.
McCloud led the Tigers with 16 points. Ross Rivera was the only other player in double-digits, posting ten points and three rebounds. Pacific's outscored Long Beach State in points off of turnovers (20-2) and points off the bench (27-2). The Tigers finished the game shooting 41.3 percent from the field with nine steals and only five turnovers. Long Beach State's Casper Ware scored a career-high 38 points.
The Tigers are next in action on Saturday, February 11 against Cal State Northridge. Tip-off is at 7:30 pm at the Alex G. Spanos Center. The game will be part of a doubleheader with the women's team for Pacific Plays Pink.