November 29, 2009

Bruins to take on Long Beach State

The UCLA Bruins (2-3) will battle the Long Beach State 49ers (3-3) at 11:30 Sunday morning in the Anaheim Convention Center. The winner will claim 7th place in the 76 Classic.

Long Beach, coached by Don Monson, has played a very tough schedule so far with only one home game. They have won at Pepperdine and Green Bay and lost by 20 at Notre Dame. The 49ers have an athletic team and can be very dangerous.

Their leading scorer is 6-7 sophomore power forward T.J. Robinson., who is averaging 19 points per game (ppg) and 9.5 rebounds per game (rpg). Robinson is a multi-position player who is a good shooter and an athletic leaper. He is also a good defender. The other starting forward is 6-6 sophomore Eugene Phelps who is averaging 10.2 ppg.

Also on the wing, Long Beach will start T.J. Anderson, a 6-6 sophomore. Anderson is a versatile player who is averaging 13 ppg. The guards for Long Beach are 6-6 sophomore Eugene Phleps, averaging 10.2 ppg and 5-9 sophomore Casper Ware averaging 10.3 ppg. Ware is lightening quick, and leads the team in assists.

All in all, Long Beach is a young and athletic team that is quite capable of beating the Bruins. The teams have played one common opponent in Pepperdine. Long Beach beat Pepperdine 67-58 on Pepperdine's home court. The Bruins defeated Pepperdine 71-52 in Pauley.

UCLA will need to continue to improve defensively and be able to shoot the ball reasonably well to win this game. We expect to see a considerable amount of zone from the 49ers. A Bruin 30% shooting percentage will ensure a loss. UCLA will need scoring from Nikola Dragovic and Jerime Anderson, in particular. We believe the Bruins will continue to show improvement and beat Long Beach in what will likely be a difficult game.

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