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Tonight / Men

February 15, 2003|Paul McLeod; Rob Fernas

Long Beach State (4-17, 3-9) at Utah State (17-6, 8-4), 6 PST, KRLA (870) -- Last place Long Beach, which has used 12 different starting lineups to little avail, could prove to be the perfect tonic for Utah State after the Aggies lost a last-second Big West Conference game Thursday to visiting UC Irvine, 59-58. Guard Desmond Penigar, formerly of Upland High and Ventura College, led Utah State with 21 points. Long Beach's road record dropped to 0-10 Thursday after it lost at Idaho, 75-67.

UC Santa Barbara (12-10, 9-3) at Cal State Northridge (10-11, 4-7), 7, KEYT (1250) -- Northridge has dropped three of its last four games and is only 1 1/2 games ahead of cellar-dwelling Long Beach. On paper the Matadors' disappointing season looks as if it could get much worse. In fact, Northridge may be in danger of not making the postseason tournament. The Matadors play four of their final six games on the road. Santa Barbara has won seven of its last eight games.

UC Irvine (14-7, 8-4) at Idaho (10-11, 6-6), 7, KUCI-FM (88.9) -- Most teams have a rough trip to rural Moscow, where Idaho plays inside the school's cavernous domed football stadium. Nonetheless, Irvine, which has a three-game winning streak, is seeking its fourth consecutive victory at Idaho and seventh win in a row overall against the Vandals. The Anteaters won, 58-45, on Jan. 18 at the Bren Center. Irvine is coming off a last-second, 59-58 victory at Utah State that dropped the Aggies into a second-place tie with the Anteaters, a game behind Santa Barbara.

-- Paul McLeod

Loyola Marymount (10-15, 4-6) at San Diego (12-10, 6-3), 8:15, KXLU-FM (88.9) -- Loyola earned its first road victory Thursday at Santa Clara, 73-61, and has won three consecutive West Coast Conference games for the first time since 1999. Freshman guard Brandon Worthy led the Lions with 19 points despite battling flu, and an aggressive defense produced runs of 17-2 and 9-1 in the second half. San Diego lost to Pepperdine, 98-93, Thursday to fall into a tie with San Francisco for second place in the WCC, two games behind Gonzaga. The Toreros, behind center Jason Keep, defeated Loyola, 82-68, on Jan. 17 at Gersten Pavilion.

-- Rob Fernas

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