Jan. 11, 2013
The Long Beach State men's basketball team (7-8, 3-1) will be looking for their third consecutive win as they face off against Hawai'i (9-7, 3-1) on Saturday in the Walter Pyramid. Hawai'i was undefeated in conference until Wednesday night when UC Irvine defeated them 68-64.
HAWAI'I RETURNS TO THE PYRAMID: The Warriors return to the Pyramid for the first time since 2007 as Big West play continues. Hawai'i and LBSU hold identical conference records at 3-1. The Warriors suffered their first conference loss on Wednesday night as UC Irvine defeated them 68-64. The 49ers lead the all-time series 6-5, but the Warriors have won the last three match-ups.
LAST TIME OUT | LBSU 78, CSUN 69: In a game with 15 lead changes and double-digit deficits for both teams, the 49ers were able to come out on top after going on a 22-4 in the second half, highlighted by a one-handed dunk by James Ennis and two back-to-back threes by Peter Pappageorge For the second straight game, Long Beach had four players in double-digit scoring and shot over 50% from the field (52.0%).
THE 49ERS ON THE INTERNET: Rob Brender will provide play-by-play for the fourth consecutive season. All games can be heard on longbeachstate.com.
LOGGING BIG MINUTES: Running a 7-8 man rotation through the first half of the season means that there were plenty of minutes to be had, and the 49ers have two players that rank in the Top 10 in the Big West in average minutes played, led by point guard Mike Caffey, who is tied for the league lead, averaging 34.2 minutes per game. Senior forward James Ennis also ranks among the leaders, with Ennis ranking fourth at 32.9 minutes per game. Outside of Long Beach State, only Cal State Fullerton and Cal State Northridge have more than one player averaging more than 30 minutes per contest.
ENNIS FILLING IT UP: Senior James Ennis is currently riding a 20-game streak of scoring in double-figures, and is one of the leading figures for Long Beach State. Overall, he has tallied 28 games with 10 or more points. Ennis' 17.5 points per game average is tied for 65th in the nation, and in 2012, Ennis has scored over 20 points four times, including back-to-back games to close out non-conference play against BYU-Hawaii and UCLA. Ennis is sixth in the league in scoring, and also ranks among the best in the Big West in rebounding, averaging 7.2 boards per game, ninth in the conference while ranking third in blocked shots at 1.9 per game.
CAFFEY PILOTING THE 49ERS: Sophomore guard Mike Caffey has taken the reins of the 49er offense this season, replacing two-time Big West Conference Player of the Year Casper Ware at point guard. As a true freshman, Caffey averaged 5.9 points and 2.2 assists in 21.8 minutes per game. The Riverside, Calif. product finished with a 1.76 assist-to-turnover ratio, handing out 76 assists while only turning the ball over 43 times in 2011-12. This season, Caffey leads the 49ers with 62 assists and is averaging 12.0 points per game, second on the team. He is currently riding a four-game streak of scoring in double-digits. Caffey also leads the 49ers in steals with 25, and has a 1.4 assist to turnover ratio through 15 games, helped greatly by a career-high nine assists at No. 4 Syracuse. Caffey is also averaging 16.3 points per game in Big West action.
JENNINGS IN THE POST: Junior center Dan Jennings is in his first season playing for Long Beach State after transferring from West Virginia, and has thrived in the Long Beach lineup, scoring in double-figures in five of the last eight games. On the season, Jennings is averaging 10.3 points and 6.3 rebounds per game, and has had some of his best performances of the season on the biggest stage. At No. 4 Syracuse, Jennings led the 49ers with a career high 20 points and three blocks while adding seven rebounds, and then scored 16 points and grabbed eight boards at No. 7 Ohio State. Jennings was also one point away from a double-double against No. 11 North Carolina, scoring nine points with a career-best 10 rebounds. In his highest-scoring effort, Jennings scored a career-high 27 points on 13-of-15 shooting at UCLA. He was hampered by a bum ankle and a stomach bug in the road contest with Cal Poly, tallying just two points and two rebounds in the game.
THE TRANSFERS ARE IN: Long Beach State had two more players make their debut in Black and Gold against Pacific on 12/29, as both Tony Freeland and Keala King became eligible after sitting out the time required due to NCAA regulations. Freeland scored 15 points while picking up his first start as a 49er, going 4-for-5 from the floor and 7-for-8 from the line in over 35 minutes, while King played 19 minutes off of the bench, and grabbed five rebounds, second-most on the team. King had a huge game against Cal Poly, notching a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds, a performance that would move him into the starting lineup against UCSB. Freeland comes to Long Beach State from DePaul, while King led Arizona State in scoring last season before departing, averaging 13.7 points per game. Dan Jennings (West Virginia) has played all season for the 49ers. Both King and Freeland have now found a home in the starting lineup.
DENG HAS CAREER NIGHT VS. CSUN: Freshman Deng Deng had a huge night against Northridge as he led the team in scoring with a career-high18, which were all scored in the first half. Deng buried five three-pointers during the game, while tallying three blocks for the 49ers.
PAPPAGEORGE SPOTTING UP: Senior Peter Pappageorge made the most of his starting opportunities, nine straight following his insertion into the lineup at Arizona. One of the team's captains, Pappageorge scored a career high 16 points against the Wildcats, and then topped that effort with 23 points at Fresno State, leading the 49ers in a win over the Bulldogs. Pappageorge made four 3-pointers in each of those games gainst CSUN, Pappageorge drained two back-to-back threes during a 22-4 Long Beach scoring run that would lead to the team's third conference win on the season. He is second on the team with 22 3-pointers made on 31.0% shooting, averaging 6.9 points per game. A
FINDING THE RANGE: Sophomore guard Kris Gulley shot over 50 percent in the first three games for Long Beach State, and is averaging 6.2 points per game. On Nov. 29 at LMU, Gulley tied a career-high with 12 points, shooting 66 percent and grabbing 10 rebounds, making the team's first double-double of the season, and Gulley has now shot 50% or better in seven of the team's games this season. In 2012-13, Gulley is tied for fourth on the team with 16 3-pointers, and is shooting 41.3 percent overall while adding 4.1 rebounds per game. He did not dress for the UCSB game due to concussive symptoms after a collision with another player at Cal Poly, and did not see game action against CSUN.
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