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Caffey, Gulley spark second-half comeback at LMU

Deng Deng scores a breakaway dunk, part of a career-high 14 points for the freshman.

Nov. 29, 2012

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Los Angeles, Calif. - Sophomore Kris Gulley scored the first eight points in the second half for Long Beach, and Mike Caffey led the 49ers with 15 points, 10 coming in the second half as the 49ers rallied from a six-point deficit at halftime to beat Loyola Marymount on the road 73-70.

Caffey and Gulley were two of four 49ers in double-figures, while Gulley pulled in 10 rebounds to go with his 12 points to collect the first double-double on the season for Long Beach State. James Ennis and Deng Dengboth finished with 14 points, a career high for Deng.

Long Beach State (3-3) survived hot shooting from the Lions, who finished 13-of-25 from beyond the arc to collect the win. C.J. Blackwell finished with 15 points, going 5-for-8 from three, while Ayodeji Egbeyemi finished with 16 points going 4-for-6 on 3-pointers. The 49ers did find an answer for the leading scorer for LMU (3-4), Anthony Ireland, holding the guard to nine points, well below his season average of 23.5 points entering the game.

A slow start found the 49ers down 13-3 after the first five minutes, but Long Beach State clawed back into the game, cutting the lead to two points on a basket by Gulley, and a jumper by Caffey tied the game at 17-17 with 9:09 in the half. A 3-pointer by Ashley Hamilton, who led the Lions with 17 points, put LMU up by five, and the lead would stretch 11 points on a C.J. Blackwell three before the 49ers scrambled to score the final two baskets in the half to cut the lead to six points a 38-32.

Gulley hit a 3-pointer as the first basket of the half, eventually scoring the first eight points for the 49ers as Long Beach State cut the LMU lead to one at 41-40. Down 44-43, a pair of free throws by Ennis gave the 49ers their first lead of the day with 14:17 to play. A breakway dunk put the 49ers up by three points, and the 49ers would never trail by more than three points the rest of the way.

Down three after Blackwell's fifth 3-pointer, Long Beach State pulled to within one after a basket by Ennis, and a layup by Dan Jenningsput the 49ers on top for good with 3:59 to go in the contest.

With the 49ers lead still three points in the final minute, Caffey was able to drive the lane for a layup with 28 seconds left to put the 49ers up by five, and Long Beach State picked up a pair of free throws from Caffey and Deng to seal the victory.

The win for the 49ers snapped a two-game losing streak against the Lions, both coming in overtime contests. The 49ers have now also won two straight games for the first time in 2012.

Long Beach State returns home to the Walter Pyramid for their next game, hosting Fresno State in a rematch of last week's game, which the 49ers won 69-61. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. on Monday, December 3 as the 49ers go for a third straight win.



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