Long Beach State goes for two straight against UCLA
Dec. 17, 2012
Long Beach, Calif. -
UCLA (7-3, 0-0 Pac-12)
8 p.m. -- New Pauley Pavilion (13,800)
Tuesday, December 18, 2012 - Pac-12 Networks
THE 49ERS ON TELEVISION: Tuesday's game against UCLA will be broadcast live on the Pac-12 Networks, the sixth televised contest for the 49ers this season. Ted Robinson will call the action while Don MacLean will provide analysis.
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.
LOOKING FOR TWO STRAIGHT: The 49ers snapped an 11-game losing streak to the Bruins, picking up their first win in the series back in 2009, which was the last time the two teams met. That matchup came in the 76 Classic in Anaheim on a neutral court. T.J. Robinson led the 49ers with a double-double, scoring 25 points and grabbing 13 rebounds as Long Beach State took the lead just before hafltime, and opened up a 17-point lead over the Bruins in the second half on the way to a 79-68 victory.
SCHEDULE STRENGTH: With two games against Top 10 opponents two weeks ago, the Long Beach State strength of schedule has moved to 11th overall, as the 49ers have now played four ranked teams in 2012-13, and two in this week's Top 5. Long Beach State has also faced five teams from the power conferences, and has one more on the schedule this week as the 49ers play at UCLA on December 18.
LAST TIME OUT | LBSU 82, BYU-Hawaii 65: In Long Beach State's return to the Walter Pyramid after two games at ranked opponents, the 49ers' top scorers came to play in an 82-65 victory over the Seasiders of BYU-Hawaii. Senior James Ennis scored 29 points while grabbing 15 rebounds, both team highs for the day, as well as career highs for the wing. Additionally, sophomore Mike Caffey set an unreal four career highs against BYUH, with 21 points, 11 rebounds, six steals, and two blocks. The pair were the first 49ers to both have a double-double in 2012, and also the first pair of 49ers to each score over 20 points in a game this season.
LOGGING BIG MINUTES: Running a 7-8 man rotation means there are plenty of minutes to be had, and the 49ers have three players that rank in the Top 10 in the Big West in average minutes played, led by point guard Mike Caffey, who leads the league, averaging 33.9 minutes per game. Senior forward James Ennis and senior guard also rank among the leaders, with Ennis averaging 32.4 minutes per and Pappageorge ranking tenth at 30.6 minutes per game. Only one other team, Cal State Fullerton, has more than one player averaging more than 30 minutes per contest.
ENNIS FILLING IT UP: Senior James Ennis is currently riding a 14-game streak of scoring in double-figures, and is one of the leading figures for Long Beach State. In 2012-13, Ennis has led the 49ers in scoring five times, including a game-high 18 against No. 11 North Carolina, and a career high 29 points against BYU-Hawaii, and is tops on the team entering the week in scoring average at 16.6 points per game, ranking 7th in the Big West. Ennis is also among the Big West leaders in rebounding at 7.9 per game (5th) and blocks at 1.7 per game (3rd).
CAFFEY WILL PILOT THE 49ERS: Sophomore guard Mike Caffey takes the reins of the 49er offense 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 43 assists and is averaging 10.9 points per game, second on the team. Caffey also leads the 49ers in steals with 18, and has a 1.22 assist to turnover ratio through eight games, helped greatly by a career-high nine assists last week at No. 4 Syracuse.
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 lately. On the season, Jennings is averaging 9.4 points and 7.0 rebounds per game, and had two 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.
FINDING THE RANGE: Sophomore guard Kris Gulley shot over 50 percent in the first three games for Long Beach State, and is second on the team in shooting percentage while averaging 7.8 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 six of the team's ten games this season. In 2012-13, Gulley is second on the team with 15 3-pointers, and is shooting 42.9 percent behind the arc, and 45.0 percent overall while adding 5.3 rebounds per game.
PAPPAGEORGE SPOTTING UP: Senior Peter Pappageorge has made the most of the opportunity to start, seven straight following his insertion to 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, and leads the team with 16 3-pointers made on 31.9% shooting.
49ERS WILL COUNT ON A HANDFUL OF DIVISION I TRANSFERS: While Long Beach State only returns six players with experience playing at the Division I level at LBSU, the 49ers can count on four other players who transferred to Long Beach from other Division I schools. Three of those players, Dan Jennings (West Virginia), Tony Freeland (DePaul) and Keala King (Arizona State) joined the 49er program after spending two years at Power Six Conference schools. The fourth, Edgar Garibay, played at Loyola Marymount. Jennings, who transferred to Long Beach State before last season and redshirted for the 49ers, was eligible to play immediately at the beginning of the season. The other three transferred midway through last season and will be eligible after the first semester.