Loyola Marymount’s Eli Scott has been a regular in the key matchup space for a few years, a testament to his productive career.
The 6-foot-6, 232-pound senior is a versatile player who might play point forward on one possession and power forward on the next. Scott fits in perfectly with a big, physical Lions squad that has been one of the West Coast Conference’s biggest surprises.
Scott hits an occasional 3-pointer but does most of his damage inside the arc (51.7%) and at the free-throw line (70%, nearly seven attempts per game). He leads the Lions in minutes (35.1), scoring (17.5), rebounding (7.7) and assists (3.7).
Scott made 15 of 22 shots and averaged 17.5 points, 4 rebounds and 3.5 assists in two losses to Gonzaga last season.
Corey Kispert would typically defend Scott, but that could change with the Zags’ four-guard starting lineup. Scott has been joined in the starting unit recently by Mattias Markusson (7-3, 265 pounds), Keli Leaupepe (6-6, 248), Ivan Alipiev (6-8, 215) and Jalin Anderson (6-4, 177).
Kispert’s size and strength might be needed on Leaupepe or Alipiev. Even then, the Zags will be giving away inches and/or pounds defending LMU’s first five. The matchups at both ends of the court will be interesting to monitor.
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