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NCAA COLLEGE BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT

Pepperdine Scouting Report

Pepperdine vs. Oklahoma State

March 19, 2000|STEVE HENSON

* About Pepperdine: The Waves have never won a second-round game, most recently getting the opportunity in 1982. Leading scorer Brandon Armstrong dealt the early blows against Indiana and finished with 22 points. Tezale Archie and reserve Craig Lewis are other perimeter threats and Kelvin Gibbs and Nick Sheppard can score inside. David Lalazarian is a versatile reserve forward who has slumped lately. Pepperdine's pressure defense--led by forward Tommie Prince--is its strength.

* About Oklahoma State: The Cowboys play physical defense and their opponents shoot only 38.3%. Forward Desmond Mason, who averaged 18.1 points in the regular season, is the best of several outstanding senior scorers. Brian Montonati, Joe Adkins and Glendon Alexander are also threats and point guard Doug Gottlieb, second in the nation with an 8.6 assist average, gets them the ball. Rugged Fredrik Jonzen, a 6-foot-10 sophomore center, had 11 rebounds and made 11 of 13 free throws in a first-round victory over Hofstra. Eddie Sutton is the only coach to take four schools to the NCAA tournament.

* Keys to the Game: Forcing the ball out of Gottlieb's hands and making Mason take shots from beyond his range will be the focus of Pepperdine's defense. The Waves will invite Gottlieb to penetrate because he is a poor shooter. Oklahoma State should be able to handle Pepperdine's press better than did Indiana, which had 21 turnovers. The Waves must get several players involved in the offense and score often in transition. Pepperdine usually experiences one or two scoring droughts, which could be costly against the Cowboys.

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