Bell leads Pepperdine over San Francisco

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP)—Freshman guard Keion Bell set a new career-high Thursday night with 32 points to lead Pepperdine to a 69-67 victory over host San Francisco, the Waves’ first win over the Dons in almost four years.

Bell hit 13 of 14 shots from the field, including all four 3-pointers, and grabbed three rebounds. Ryan Holmes added nine points and five assists for the Waves (5-17, 2-4 WCC), who snapped a four-game losing streak. Pepperdine had last beaten USF on Feb. 3, 2005.

A season-high 28 points and 10 rebounds from Dion Lowhorn, the WCC’s leading scorer, were not enough to prevent the Dons (8-13, 0-6) from suffering their sixth straight loss, all in conference play.

Pepperdine jumped to a 16-3 lead as USF went 0-for-4 from the floor with four turnovers in its first 10 possessions. The Waves got four easy layups and dunks during the run, which included seven points from Bell.

The Dons slowly clawed back with solid man-to-man defense and managed to tie the score at 25 when Blake Wallace canned a jumper with 2:41 left in the half. Lowhorn had 12 points before intermission to drive the comeback.

A driving layup by Kwame Vaughn at the 14:10 mark put USF up 43-42, the Dons’ first lead since the opening minute. The teams proceeded to trade the lead three more times in rapid succession before Pepperdine went on a 9-1 run.

The Waves’ aggressive defense, which constantly double-teamed Lowhorn in the paint, forced USF away from their star for a time. But the junior popped outside for a 3-pointer at the 1:30 mark to finally get the Dons within three points, at 66-63.

Pepperdine responded with an 11-foot right baseline jumper from Mychel Thompson with 1 second remaining on the shot clock, and then held on despite missing two of three free throws in the final 27.6 seconds.

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