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Pepperdine, Lewis Survive Against Fullerton, 80-71

December 22, 1987|RAY RIPTON | Times Staff Writer

Pepperdine's Tom Lewis survived two first-half knockdowns from Fullerton elbows Monday night and the Waves battled to an 80-71 victory before 1,888 fans at Firestone Fieldhouse.

The Titans (2-4) went on a 7-0 spurt to start the game, and Pepperdine (5-3) went without a basket for more than four minutes. Craig Davis hit a three-point shot for the Waves' first basket with 15:32 left in the first half.

Davis's three-pointer came after Lewis went down and out of the game after he caught an elbow while battling for a rebound under the basket.

Lewis also went down and out for a while, in the same sort of situation, at 9:59 with Fullerton leading, 15-14.

Pepperdine took its first lead at 16-15 on a Donnie Moore jumper. The Waves, hitting 60% of their shots before intermission (62.5% for the game), went on to lead, 40-31, at halftime.

Lewis, held to 4 points in the first 20 minutes, scored 12 points in the second half to help the Waves surge further ahead.

When Levy Middlebrooks, who finished with a team-high 19 points, completed a three-point play with 10:15 remaining, it gave Pepperdine a 67-52 lead.

The Waves appeared to be coasting. But a half-court trap by Fullerton forced a rash of Pepperdine turnovers, the Titans outscored the Waves, 13-2, and closed to 69-65 at the five-minute mark.

The Fullerton surge was led by Richard Morton, who scored a game-high 23 points, and Henry Turner, who had 21. Morton also had 3 steals and 6 assists, and Turner grabbed 8 rebounds.

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