Men's Basketball Returns Home Against Portland
Jan. 16, 2001
Game No. 16 - University of Portland
Wednesday, January 17 - 7 p.m.
The Kennel - Spokane, WA
Radio: ESPN 630 AM The Score 25 minutes prior to tipoff
Game No. 17 - University of Portland
GONZAGA UNIVERSITY BULLDOGS (10-5, 2-0 in West Coast Conference)
UNIVERSITY OF PORTLAND PILOTS (9-6, 2-0 in West Coast Conference)
BULLDOGS LEAD SERIES: Gonzaga University leads the overall series with the University of Portland 66-64. The Bulldogs have swept the season series each of the past four seasons. The last Pilots' win in the series came in the 1996 West Coast Conference Tournament championship game at Santa Clara University after the teams had split the regular-season series. Gonzaga has won 10 straight against the Pilots in The Kennel since suffering a 68-64 setback in 1990. The last time Gonzaga lost in the Chiles Center on the Portland campus was 1996 by a 67-66 count.
EARLY-SEASON BATTLE FOR LEAD: Gonzaga University and the University of Portland meet in their annual home-and-home series this week, and in the second week of the West Coast Conference season the games have first place implications. The Bulldogs and Pilots both swept in the Bay Area last weekend with victories at the University of San Francisco and Saint Mary's College. Thus, the Bulldogs and the Pilots meet Wednesday at 7 p.m. in The Kennel with no worse than a share of first place on the line. The Bulldogs will re-pay the visit Saturday at 7 p.m. in the Chiles Center in Portland. Gonzaga is off to a 2-0 start in WCC action for the fifth straight season, while Portland is 2-0 for the first time since the 1995 season when the Pilots started 4-0. Pepperdine University joined Gonzaga and Portland as the only teams to come out of the first weekend of WCC action unscathed. The Waves topped Santa Clara University and the University of San Diego, the latter a showdown of the teams picked to finish one-two by most pre-season prognosticators. Pepperdine and Loyola Marymount University meet Wednesday and Saturday in their cross-town rivalry.
DICKAU RETURNS - WCC PLAYER OF WEEK: After six weeks and nine games, Gonzaga University point guard Dan Dickau finally returned to the lineup when the Bulldogs opened West Coast Conference play last weekend. Out of action since breaking his left index finger Nov. 29 in the waning minutes of the Bulldogs game at the University of Arizona, the transfer from the University of Washington came back in style to earned WCC Player of the Week accolades. He posted double-doubles in both games of his return, getting 13 points and 10 assists against the University of San Francisco, then coming back the next night for 15 points and 12 assists at Saint Mary's College. And he sat out the final 9:34 against the Gaels as head coach Mark Few let the bench finish the 102-48 rout. He struggled somewhat from the field on Friday, hitting 3-of-10 from the field and 0-for-5 from 3-point range. But he found his touch on Saturday, going 5-for-8 from the field, including 3-for-5 from long range.
DICKAU JUST MISSES RECORD: Point guard Dan Dickau just missed getting into the Gonzaga University record book with his 12 assists Saturday at Saint Mary's College, falling one shy of matching the Bulldogs' single-game record. John Stockton (twice), Matt Santangelo and Ken Tyler share the single-game assists mark with 13.
NO DOUBLEHEADERS THIS YEAR: Gonzaga University and the University of Portland will not be playing the men's/women's doubleheader as has been the rule at least through the decade of the '90s. The men will play Wednesday in The Kennel, the women take to The Kennel floor on Thursday, the men meet Saturday in Portland and the women play a 2 p.m. Sunday matinee in the Rose City. All three night games are at 7 p.m.
WCC TOURNAMENT GOES TO SAN DIEGO: The 15th annual West Coast Conference Tournament makes its first appearance in San Diego, Calif., this March. The new Jenny Craig Pavilion will host the affair March 1-5 with 14 men's and women's games. The tournament leaves the Bay Area for the first time since 1997 when Loyola Marymount University was the host, and for just the fourth time in the history of the tourney. Tickets are on sale at all eight competing institutions, including the Gonzaga University ticket office at (509) 323-4046. Tickets are $65 and include all 14 men's and women's games that determine automatic bids into the NCAA tourney.
RECORD-SETTING WIN: Saturday's 102-48 rout over Saint Mary's College was one for the Gonzaga University records book. The 54-point victory was the third of the season by 50 or more points for the Bulldogs, and was their largest WCC victory in 22 years of conference membership. Gonzaga has two 47-point league victories to its credit - 104-57 against the University of Portland in 1999, and 103-56 last season over Loyola Marymount University, both games in The Kennel. Gonzaga set a school record with a 57-point victory over Northwest College earlier this season. Saturday's margin of victory was the largest for the Bulldogs over a NCAA Division I program, erasing the 50-point victory earlier this season over the University of Idaho.
DOUBLE FIGURES: For the second time this season, Gonzaga University had six players in double-digit scoring in Saturday's win at Saint Mary's College. Dan Dickau (15), Casey Calvary and Germayne Forbes (14 each), Mark Spink and Alex Hernandez (11 each) and Kyle Bankhead (10) turned the trick. In Gonzaga's 93-36 win over Northwest College earlier this year, six players hit double figures - Forbes (18), Spink (16), Cory Violette (13), Hernandez (11) and Bankhead and Anthony Reason (10 each). Gonzaga has had four or more in double digits in nine games this season.
CALVARY WOODEN AWARD NOMINEE: Gonzaga University senior forward Casey Calvary is one of the top 30 mid-season candidates for the John R. Wooden Award. The mid-season list was released Dec. 28. Calvary was originally one of the Pre-season Top 50 candidates for the 2000-01 Wooden Award All-American Team. On March 27, 2001, the 10-player Wooden Award All-American Team will be announced. One member of the Wooden Award All-American Team will be selected on Friday April 6, 2001 as the recipient of the Wooden Award Trophy as the nation's "Most Outstanding Collegiate Basketball Player of the Year." The event will be a one hour telecast on FOX Sports Net. The top 50 Candidates have been selected based on last year's individual performance and team records. In late December, the Wooden Award committee will release the Mid-season Top 30 during a half-hour program on FOX Sports Net. This is the second straight year the Bulldogs have had a Wooden Award nominee, guard Matt Santangelo getting the nomination a year ago.
FEW'S ROOKIE SEASON: Gonzaga University head coach Mark Few had one of the best rookie seasons in NCAA history, the Bulldogs' 26 wins ranking him tied for 7th for "Top 10 Career Starts For Head Coaches By Victories." He's tied with such coaching legends as Jim Boeheim at Syracuse University (1977), Denny Crum of the University of Louisville (1972) and Nolan Richardson of Tulsa University (1981). All won 26 games as rookie head coaches at the NCAA Division I level.
20 WINS AGAIN: For the seventh time in eight years Gonzaga University hit the 20-win plateau, the Bulldogs' 26 wins last season second only behind the 1999 school record mark of 28-7 mark. Last year marked the fourth time the Bulldogs hit the magic 20-win plateau in the regular season. The 1994 squad took a 20-6 record into the West Coast Conference Tournament, the 1998 team was 21-8 entering the tourney, the 1999 Bulldogs went 22-6 in the regular season and the 2000 squad was 21-8 heading into the WCC Tournament. Gonzaga's first 20-win season as a NCAA Division I program came in 1992 with a 20-10 mark, falling to Pepperdine University 73-70 in the Bulldogs' first appearance in the WCC Tournament title game.
BULLDOGS IN THE KENNEL: The Kennel - home of Gonzaga University's Bulldogs - has gained the reputation as one of the toughest courts in the country. In the last nine seasons the Bulldogs are 108-9 at home for a nifty 92.3 winning percentage, finishing 10-1 last season. The Bulldogs completed a 10-0 season in The Kennel in 1999, winning by an average of 31.9 ppg. The Bulldogs also posted undefeated home campaigns in 1993 (13-0) and 1994 (14-0), and suffered just one home setback in 1996 and 1998. Gonzaga was 10-1 at home in 1998. The Bulldogs put together a 34-game home-court-winning streak from 1992-95, which at the time was the second-longest active streak in the country. The Bulldogs are 5-0 at home this season and have a winning margin of 34.4 ppg.
CALVARY PASSES 1,000-POINT PLATEAU... Senior forward Casey Calvary has become the 22nd played in Gonzaga University to surpass the 1,000-point barrier, entering Wednesday's game with the University of Portland with 1,195 points. That ranks him 13th in school history, 31 shy of matching Bill Wilson's 1,168 points. Calvary should move into the top 10, needing 160 more points to surpass Bill Suter at No. 10 with 1,354.
...AND SURPASSES 600 REBOUNDS: Casey Calvary became just the fourth player in Gonzaga University history to join the 1,000-point/600-rebound club. He grabbed 7 rebounds against Monmouth University on Dec. 30, 2000, to join the 600 rebound club. He has 632 rebounds entering Wednesday's game with the University of Portland to rank 7th on the all-time Gonzaga list. Calvary surpassed current Gonzaga University Board of Regent Bill Quigg last weekend, Quigg with 630 from 1969-71. Calvary needs 3 boards to move into 6th ahead of Jim Grady (634 from 1975-77) and 11 to claim 5th from Charlie Jordan (642 from 1958-59). Jerry Vermillion (1,547 points/1,670 rebounds), Gary Lechman (1,452/910) and Greg Sten (1,168/783) are the other three members of the 1,000 points/600 rebound club.
BLOCK PARTY: With 21 blocks this season, Casey Calvary has 181 in his Gonzaga University, by far the all-time leader in GU history (Tim Ruff is second with 99). Calvary finds himself three shy of becoming the all-time shot blocker in West Coast Conference history. Scott Thompson of the University of San Diego currently heads the list with 183 from 1983-87.
BULLDOGS WIN 200TH: Gonzaga University's win at the University of Montana earlier this year was the 200th for the Bulldogs in the last 10 seasons. Gonzaga is 205-88 since the 1991-92 season for a .700 winning percentage.
SCOUTING THE PILOTS: The University of Portland, 10-18 a year ago and 4-10 in the West Coast Conference, has shown signs of improvement this season. The Pilots are 9-6 heading into Wednesday's first-place showdown at Gonzaga University after sweeping the University of San Francisco and Saint Mary's College last weekend on the road. Center Tim Frost (13.1), reserve guard Ryan Jones (11.9 ppg) and junior college transfer Coky Rochin (11.6 ppg) pace the Pilots. Rochin has played in just eight games since returning from knee surgery to repair a torn meniscus and minor ligament damage. Travis Andrews (9.9 ppg) has replaced Jones in the starting lineup the past four games, Jones initially sidelined with a sprained ankle. The Pilots lost the services of guard/forward Carmie Olowoyo who was forced to return to his native Perth, Australia, as the result of a long-term family medical crisis. He had started the first 13 games and was averaging 9.2 ppg. Ross Jorgusen started last week's West Coast Conference openers in Olowoyo's absence.
CALVARY WCC PLAYER OF MONTH: Gonzaga University senior forward Casey Calvary was named the West Coast Conference men's basketball Player of the Month for December as announced by WCC commissioner Michael Gilleran. The native of Tacoma, Wash., scored a career-high 29 points against the University of Washington, poured in 28 points at the University of Montana and had a 27-point night against the University of Idaho. In all, he had five games of 20 or more points through the first 10 games of the season. He also had seven games of 6 or more rebounds. Calvary ended the month as the leading scorer in the WCC at 21.5 ppg.
BULLDOGS AMONG WCC LEADERS: Gonzaga University players are prominent in this week's West Coast Conference statistics. Casey Calvary leads the league in scoring at 21.0 ppg. Mark Spink tops the conference in field goal percentage, hitting 60.8 percent of his shots (48-for-79). Calvary is fourth in FG accuracy at 55.2 percent (111-for-201). Gonzaga has three of the top four spots in 3-point field goal percentage, Kyle Bankhead leading the WCC at 52.8 percent (28-for-53). Germayne Forbes is second at 46.2 percent (18-for-39) and Calvary is fourth at 41.7 (15-for-36). Blake Stepp is tied for fourth in free throw percentage with the University of San Francisco's Darrell Tucker at 80.0 percent, Stepp connecting on 48-of-60. Stepp is also second in assists/game at 4.40 on 66 in 15 outings, and is tied for fourth in steals/game at 1.47 with 22 in 15 games. Calvary is sixth in rebounding at 6.3 rpg, and is third in blocked shots with 21 for 1.5/game.
GONZAGA LEADS TEAM CATEGORIES: Gonzaga University heads six West Coast Conference categories, including scoring offense (82.9 ppg), scoring margin (+15.1), field goal percentage (50.6 percent) and 3-point field goal percentage (41.0 percent). The Bulldogs are also the top rebounding team in the WCC with 39.7 rpg and a +8.1 rebounding margin, and have the best field goal defense in the league as opponents have connected on just 39.3 percent of their shots.
SPINK DOUBLES UP: After scoring in double figures in just two of the first 10 games this season, Gonzaga University senior forward Mark Spink has hit double figures in each of his last five outings. He's averaging 12.8 ppg over the last five games, including back-to-back 11-point nights in Gonzaga's West Coast Conference openers last weekend.
TAKING IT TO THE BANK(HEAD): Kyle Bankhead has been money in the bank of late, the walk-on redshirt freshman scoring in double digits each of the last four games. He's averaging 10.5 ppg in that stretch, and scored 10 points in each of last weekend's West Coast Conference road outings. He scored a career-high 15 points against Monmouth University earlier this season.
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