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MALIBU, Calif. -- The Runnin' Utes (5-6) will hit the road to take on Pepperdine (3-10) Wednesday night in Malibu, Calif. Utah will try to rebound from two straight home losses with a win over the Waves, who have lost their last seven games.
Last Saturday at the Huntsman Center the Utes lost to Illinois State in the Mountain West/Missouri Valley conference challenge. In their ten point defeat, senior forward Kim Tillie (Cagnes-sur-Mer, France) scored a team high 19 points and snagged seven rebounds while fellow senior Luka Drca (Belgrade, Serbia) contributed from the back-court with 18 points and eight boards. Utah's season's leading scorer Carlon Brown (Riverside, Calif.), who is averaging 13.2 points a game, came off the bench to contribute 15 points.
The Waves are coming off a 13 point loss to UC Irvine. Junior guard Mychel Thompson (Portland, Ore.) lead Pepperdine with 16 points while Keion Bell (Los Angeles, Calf.), the Waves leading scorer for the season, was held to single digits. Pepperdine shot a season best 56% from behind the arch.
The Waves will try to snap their seven game drought with a rebound performance from their stand-out sophomore guard Keion Bell who is averaging 20.9 points per game. Bell also finds his teammates in scoring position with 4 assists a game. Pepperdine has played seven games on their home court at Firestone Fieldhouse and have only earned one victory over Cal State San Bernardino back on November 20th. Their losing steak started with a loss to Mountain West conference foe Wyoming on November 29th.
The Runnin' Utes will look for senior leadership on the road from Kim Tillie who leads the team in rebounds with 6.5 a game and Luka Drca who leads the Utes with 4.3 helpers a game. Carlon Brown, one of the two Utes from southern California will be sure to have a big game in front of many family and friends. David Foster, the other California native, suffered a sprained ankle in the loss to Illinois State last Saturday and will be a game time decision.
Coach Jim Boylen will have his team ready to take on Coach Tom Asbury's team in a contest that will break at least one teams losing streak. Tip-off is scheduled for 7pm PT.