The Pepperdine Waves and the UC Irvine Anteaters meet Tuesday in college basketball action from Dollar Loan Center. Pepperdine is sitting at 3-2 overall this year. The Waves lost to UNLV in their last outing. As for UC Irvine, they’re 3-1 overall after a Friday blowout victory over Occidental. You're welcome to read our Pepperdine vs UC Irvine Prediction.
The Waves have been a mixed bag so far this year, but they’ve done very well in their victories. Pepperdine has taken out Concordia 76-64, Lafayette 76-53 and LIU 88-53 for three wins thus far. The lone blemish in their first four outings was a 79-78 loss to UC Davis that featured a 48-31 blown lead at the break.
Pepperdine took another defeat versus UNLV in their last matchup. The Waves were down 40-30 at the break this time, and didn’t get any closer in an eventual 82-68 result. Leading the team with a double-double on 31 points and 12 rebounds was Michael Ajayi, and Houston Mallette added 26 points with three rebounds.
UC Irvine Anteaters
Over on the Anteaters’ side, they lost their opener versus San Jose State 72-64, but it’s been a series of victories since then. UC Irvine beat New Mexico State 91-74 in game two, then came an excellent 70-60 upset win over USC. The Anteaters held the Trojans to just 28.8 percent shooting from the field and 4-of-21 (19 percent) from 3-point range in that victory.
UC Irvine was able to keep it going in their last matchup versus Occidental. The Anteaters posted 54 points in the first half and 57 more in the second for a 111-51 victory. Andre Henry topped all scorers with 24 points, and Hayden Welling came off the bench to contribute 18 points with four rebounds.
ANDREW’S FREE PICK
I’m going to stay with UC Irvine. The Anteaters have found a nice groove over the last three games, and they’re playing quite well. UC Irvine demolished an overmatched Occidental team in their last outing, shooting a blistering 61.5 percent from the field with 45 rebounds and 29 assists. Much of that activity came from the team’s bench as the Anteaters built up some nice experience.
As for Pepperdine, they allowed 58.2 percent shooting from the floor versus UNLV in their last appearance and couldn’t keep up with the quick scoring pace despite some decent numbers themselves. This one’s probably going to be a high-scoring game as well. If UC Irvine can get off to a quick start I think they’ll end up fine cover-wise.