The season opener didn’t go as planned for Long Beach State men’s basketball. Instead of starting the campaign at UCLA on Monday, the Beach struggled to find a rhythm and fell at Loyola Marymount University 85-61 on Friday night.
LBSU (0-1) shot 32 percent from the floor (19-for-59) and had multiple five-minute stretches without a field goal. LMU (2-2) took a 20-point lead in the first half and extended its lead in the second half from behind the arc. The Lions shot 40 percent (15-for-38) from 3-point range.
Michael Carter III led the way for LBSU with 19 points, and transfer Isaiah Washington added 17 points in his debut. Joe Quintana led LMU with 20 points. He was 6-for-11 from behind the arc.
LMU took an early lead with a 12-0 run while LBSU only scored seven points in the first 10 minutes. The Lions led 33-13 when Washington came alive to help the Beach cut the halftime deficit to 42-28.
LBSU started the second half with renewed rigor and trailed by nine when Quintana sparked an LMU run. The Beach went more than seven minutes of the second half without a field goal.
Sophomore Romelle Mansel finished with a career-high nine rebounds to lead the Beach, and LBSU had six players make their debuts.
The December 4 start marked the latest beginning to a basketball season for LBSU since 1992-93.
LBSU will return to Walter Pyramid on Sunday at 2 p.m. to host Seattle. A live stream of the game will be available at www.longbeachstate.com.