Gonzaga Falls to LMU As Shooting Woes Take Their Toll

Feb. 18, 2010

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LOS ANGELES - Shooting woes hampered Gonzaga University Thursday night and Loyola Marymount University (14-13, 5-6) got balanced scoring with five players in double figures in a 74-66 upset of Gonzaga University.

The Bulldogs (21-5, 9-2), ranked 9th in the latest ESPN/USA Today Top 25 and 13th in the Associated Press rankings, had won 13 of their last 14 games and four in a row heading into the contest. The loss also drops the Bulldogs to just a game ahead of the University of Portland (8-3) and Saint Mary's College (9-3), both winners on Thursday.

The Bulldogs shot just 34.4 percent from the field (21-for-61) for the game, their lowest percentage since shooting 27.8 percent (15-for-54) in a mid-December loss to Duke University in Madison Square Garden. Gonzaga began the game 4-for-4 from 3-point range then hit just two of its next 12 shots from beyond the arc to finish 6-for-16.

Gonzaga head coach Mark Few said the Bulldogs had some good looks.

"We had some really good looks," Few said. "We got some point-blankers. But we pretty much got throttled on our inside play and we thought we had a decided advantage in there."

Elias Harris went 4-for-11 and Rob Sacre 0-for-5 inside, and Matt Bouldin (3-for-12) and Steven Gray (4-for-14) were cold from the perimeter.

The Lions, meanwhile, got 17 points from Ashley Hamilton, 16 from Drew Viney, 12 off the bench from Larry Davis, 11 from Kevin Young and 10 from Jarrod DuBois. Viney also contributed 10 rebounds and five assists.

The victory was the Lions' first over a ranked team since the 1990 NCAA tournament, when they defeated the University of Alabama in the West Regional semifinals. LMU has won three of its last four outings.

Gonzaga coach Mark Few complimented the Lions.

"I always thought they had a very, very talented crew," Few said of the Lions. "I mean, they've got a lot of pieces. For the most part, they consistently beat us to the basketball time and time again."

The first half was a half of spurts. Bulldogs got a 3-pointer from the right top of the circle from Harris for the first points of the game, but LMU went on a 7-0 run fueled by 5 points from Viney. The Bulldogs came back with 6 straight for a 9-7 lead.

The Bulldogs never trailed the remainder of the half, building a 10-point cushion at 22-12 with 13:08 to play when Kelly Olynyk drained the fourth Bulldog trey of the first half from the left top of the circle.

But the Lions wouldn't go away, scoring the next five points before Manny Arop hit a pair of buckets - including a 3-pointer - sandwiched around a Davis three from the left corner - and the Bulldogs still led by 7 with just under 10 minutes to go in the half.

Ahead 36-27 following a Demetri Goodson tip-in of a Harris miss, LMU ended the half with a 12-3 spurt to pull within 39-36 at the half.

The Bulldogs couldn't find any offensive consistency in the second half, nor could they generate a run to cut into the LMU lead until late in the game. The Lions opened the second half with a 14-6 run to take a 50-45 advantage with 13:21 to go. DuBois had a pair of threes and Davis a jumper from the left elbow and a fast break layin as the Lions took a lead they would never relinquish.

Until Harris made a free throw and Bol Kong followed with a pair of throws with 6:45 to play, the Bulldogs had been unable to string back-to-back points together, and the Bulldogs never did score back-to-back field goals in the second half. The biggest run Gonzaga put together in the second half was six points, coming on two free throws each by Harris and Arop and a layin by Bouldin to cut the LMU lead to 66-62 with 3:05 to play.

But Hamilton scored from the left of the lane, Goodson got a coast-to-coast layin and then the Lions got a huge play with the shot clock running down. The Zags knocked the ball out of bounds with two seconds on the shot clock. LMU had the ball out of bounds on the side and it deflected off a Zag and out of bounds, leaving the Lions with one tick left on the shot clock. Davis got loose cutting down the right side of the lane and got a layin on the inbounds pass. The referees reviewed the play on the television monitor and ruled the basket good to put the Lions up 70-64 with :41 to play.

"That was a huge play," LMU head coach Max Good said of Davis' layup. "If we miss that and they get running, they could cut (the lead) to two. That's almost a four-point switch."

Gonzaga got another layin from Bouldin to make it 70-66, but two free throws each by Viney and Vernon Teel sealed the win for the Bulldogs.

Gonzaga will try to salvage the split Saturday at Pepperdine University in a 6 p.m. game to be televised in Spokane on FOX28 because of KHQ-TV's coverage of the Olympics. FSN will also televise the game but fans should check their local listings for the FSN game in their area.

 

 

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