Turiaf's 40 Puts Bite Into Vandals

Nov. 25, 2004

Associated Press Writer

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) - Ronny Turiaf scored a career-high 40 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, leading No. 24 Gonzaga to an 88-74 victory over Idaho on Wednesday night.

Turiaf made 13 of 18 field goals and 14 of 15 free throws to help Gonzaga (3-0) hold off a spirited challenge from Idaho (0-4) in the second half.

The Vandals used five 3-pointers early in the half to cut an 11-point halftime deficit to three. They shot 11-of-29 from behind the arc in the game.

Dandrick Jones' 3-pointer helped Idaho close to 64-61 with 11:29 left. But Turiaf hit a pair of free throws and a turnaround jumper as Gonzaga built a 72-64 lead. Adam Morrison followed with a 3, and Turiaf nailed three free throws and a fadeaway jumper as Gonzaga took an 80-68 lead.

After a basket by Idaho's Lionel Davis made it 80-70 with 4 minutes left, the Vandals went scoreless for three minutes as Gonzaga put the game away.

Turiaf became the first Gonzaga player since Jim McPhee in 1990 to score 40 points in a game. Turiaf set his previous career high with 33 points earlier this season.

Morrison added 13 points for Gonzaga, and Derek Raivio and Sean Mallon scored 11 each.

Jones led Idaho with 23 points, and Dillon Higdon added 16.

Gonzaga shot 56 percent in the game and outrebounded the Vandals 37-25.

Turiaf had 21 first-half points, shooting 8-of-11, as Gonzaga took a 47-36 lead.

Junior college transfer J.P. Batista played in his first game for Gonzaga after missing the first two while the NCAA investigated his junior college career.



Gonzaga has won 15 straight at home and is 28-0 at home when ranked. The Bulldogs have won five straight against Idaho.

The Zags face their toughest test so far this season on Saturday against No. 5 Illinois at the Wooden Tradition in Indianapolis.

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