Advertisement

Lions' Life to Get Tougher in Hawkeye Cage Classic

December 04, 1986|ALAN DROOZ

Loyola Marymount's basketball team, off to a 2-0 start against lower-division teams, gets into the meat of its pre-conference schedule this weekend in the Amana-Hawkeye Classic in Iowa City.

The Lions will open against Washington State (2-1) while host Iowa faces Delaware (1-0) on Friday. Washington State has a tall team that will try to keep Loyola from running. The Cougars have 6-7 Joe Wallace (15-point average), 6-8 Brian Quinnett (12.7) and 6-9 Dwayne Scholten up front, with 7-foot Ken Mathia coming off the bench. The Cougars are averaging 64 points a game, allowing only 59, while Loyola is scoring 99 points per game. Iowa is coming off its championship in the Great Alaska Shootout, which gained the Hawkeyes (3-0) eminence as the No. 5 team in the nation in this week's polls.

Loyola will be at less than full strength, with sophomore guard Enoch Simmons staying in Los Angeles for therapy on his sore knee, on which he had arthroscopic surgery over the summer. Center Vic Lazzaretti, who did not suit up Monday, has a tender ankle and is on a day-to-day basis.

"I would feel much more comfortable going in with a healthy Lazzaretti and Enoch," Coach Paul Westhead said after Monday's 109-72 victory over Susquehanna, a Division III school from Pennsylvania. "Our young guys are going to need a dozen games to get comfortable. (But) we'll be all right."

Loyola's relatively easy first two games allowed Westhead to play everyone. Freshman guard Jeff Fryer, one of the team's three-point specialists, got hot in the second half against Susquehanna and finished with 18 points. Junior forward Mark Armstrong had a career-high 20 points and is averaging 14 rebounds. His running partner at forward, junior Mike Yoest, had 28 points in each game and is adding 9.5 rebounds. Point guard Chris Nikchevich's shooting is off but he is still contributing 10 points and 12 assists per game.

Westhead said Simmons play at point guard will be missed. "Fryer will be all right," Westhead added. " . . . He just needs some minutes. Now he'll get them. Armstrong was a key for us. Mark, in some ways, is a crucial guy for us. He can affect the team and the outcome of a game."

Loyola looked ragged and, at times, unconcerned Monday. Westhead said the Lions will be at "a different level of awareness Friday. It's forced upon us."

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|