Men's Basketball Home Against Dons, Gaels
Jan. 22, 2002
Game No. 20 - San Francisco Dons
Thursday, Jan. 24 - 8 p.m. PST
The Kennel - Spokane, WA
Radio: News Talk AM 1510 KGA - Pre-game show at 7:45 p.m. PST
TV: PAX - Spokane (UHF 34, AT&T Broadband Cable 8)
No. 16 GONZAGA UNIVERSITY BULLDOGS (16-3, 3-1 West Coast Conference)
UNIVERSITY OF SAN FRANCISCO DONS (8-9, 3-1 West Coast Conference)
Saturday, Jan. 26 - 7 p.m. PST
The Kennel - Spokane, WA
Radio: News Talk AM 1510 KGA - Pre-game show at 6:45 p.m. PST
TV: PAX - Spokane (UHF 34, AT&T Broadband Cable 8)
SAINT MARY'S COLLEGE GAELS (5-12, 0-4 West Coast Conference)
BATTLE FOR 2nd: Already a game off the West Coast Conference lead, Gonzaga University tries to keep its grip on second place Thursday when the University of San Francisco visits The Kennel for an 8 p.m. tip off. Both clubs are 3-1 in the WCC, a game behind undefeated Pepperdine University.
STREAK SNAPPED: Gonzaga University's 12-game winning streak was snapped last Friday at Pepperdine University, the Waves taking an 88-79 victory. Gonzaga was two wins shy of matching its school record set last season.
DICKAU HOT: Senior point guard Dan Dickau had perhaps the hottest half in Gonzaga University history last Friday at Loyola Marymount University, scoring all 34 of his points in the first half. Dickau, who scored 31 of his career-high 39 points in the second half at Santa Clara University last season, went 11-for-14 from the field and 9-for-11 from 3-point range in the opening half. He took just one shot in the second half - a 3-pointer - despite playing 15 minutes of the second half. Dickau's previous high this season was 29 points against Fresno State University in the Fab Four Classic in The Forum.
GOURDE SCORES, BOARDS: Zach Gourde scored a career-high 25 points against Pepperdine University, surpassing his previous best of 22 set three times, including in last year's regular-season finale at the University of San Diego. He came back the next night at Loyola Marymount University and matched his career rebounding total with 12 set in the season opener at the University of Illinois and equaled against Fresno State University at the Fab Four Classic in The Forum.
STEPP MISSES TRIPLE-DOUBLE: Sophomore guard Blake Stepp fell one rebound and one assist shy of recording a triple-double last Saturday against Loyola Marymount University. He finished with 13 points, 9 rebounds, a career high, and 9 assists, one shy of his career best.
BULLDOGS DIP: Gonzaga University took a slight dip in the national polls, falling three spots to 16th in the Associated Press Top 25 and taking a four-spot tumble back to 18th in the USA TODAY/ESPN Top 25. It's the seventh straight week for the Bulldogs in the AP rankings since cracking the list Dec. 12 at No. 25, matching Gonzaga's previous longest poll run from Nov. 8-Dec. 12, 1999. Gonzaga is in the USA TODAY/ESPN poll for the sixth straight week, entering the poll 24th on Dec. 16. Last week's 13th spot in AP and 14th in USA TODAY/ESPN marked the Bulldogs highest regular-season ranking ever in either major poll. However, the Bulldogs have enjoyed loftier rankings, being ranked 12th in the final USA TODAY/ESPN poll of the 1999 season, Gonzaga's best ranking in school history, and 20th in last year's final USA TODAY/ESPN poll.
BEST START EVER:? With a 16-3 record this season, Gonzaga University is off to its best start since joining the NCAA Division I ranks for the 1958-59 season. The 1966-67 campaign saw the Bulldogs start 14-2 prior to dropping three straight. The 1998-99 squad was 15-4 after 19 games.
BUSY THURSDAY: Head coach Mark Few is going to have a busy Thursday. Prior to Gonzaga University's game with the University of San Francisco, Few will act as a support runner when the Olympic Torch makes its way through Spokane. He's scheduled to be part of the Olympic Torch festivities from 6:12-6:15 p.m. Thursday, and will get back to The Kennel in time for the 8 p.m. tip.
POUNDING THE BOARDS: Gonzaga University, out rebounded for just the fifth time this season last Friday at Pepperdine University, slipped into a tie for third nationally in rebound margin for games through Monday. The Bulldogs, who had an 11.0 margin to rank first heading into the weekend, came out of the Los Angeles split with a 9.7 margin to fall behind the University of Wyoming (10.3) and the University of Kansas (9.9), and tied with Louisiana Tech University. Michigan State University, which led the nation last season, is fifth at 9.6. Pepperdine held a commanding +14 edge on the boards in the Waves 88-79 victory, the first time the Bulldogs had been out rebounded by double digits this season. The Bulldogs bounced back to win the battle of the boards the next night against Loyola Marymount University 48-36, the 12th time Gonzaga held a double-digit edge this season. The other four times Gonzaga has been out rebounded are 41-33 at home against Santa Clara University, 31-26 against Marquette University in the title game of the Great Alaska Shootout, 39-36 at home against Washington State University and 35-31 at Saint Joseph's University. Gonzaga has held the edge in 14 of 19 outings. Gonzaga has grabbed 50 or more rebounds four times this season - 53 at home against the University of Arkansas-Pine Bluff, 50 at the University of Washington, 51 at home against Eastern Oregon University and 53 against Monmouth University. Cory Violette's career-high 20 rebounds against Fresno State University is tied for the eighth highest single-game total this season in NCAA Division I ranks.
BULLDOGS VS. DONS: Gonzaga University leads the overall series against the University of San Francisco 26-19, but the Bulldogs have won 21 of the last 26 and six straight. The Bulldogs have defeated USF 16 straight times in The Kennel. The last time USF won in Spokane was 69-58 in 1982, the last season the Dons had basketball prior to a 3-year stretch when the program was disbanded. Gonzaga's last setback to USF was 80-67 in the title game of the 1998 West Coast Conference Tournament.
BULLDOGS VS. GAELS: Gonzaga University holds a 33-20 lead in the series and the Bulldogs bring an 11-game winning streak in the series into Saturday's contest. Gonzaga has won 23 of the last 28 meetings since dropping six straight in the series from 1987-90. The last SMC victory was 74-72 in 1997 in Moraga, Calif. The last time the Gaels prevailed in The Kennel was 1995 by a 68-63 count.
ELITE COMPANY: Gonzaga University is one of just three schools to advance to the Sweet Sixteen each of the past three seasons. Michigan State University and Duke University are the other two. Duke and MSU appeared in their fourth straight Sweet Sixteen in 2001. Since the bracket expanded to 64 teams in 1985, there have been 18 occasions where teams have had runs of three years or more into the Sweet Sixteen. The University of North Carolina leads the way with a 9-year stretch from 1985-93, followed by Duke with a 7-year run from 1986-92.
BULLDOGS AND 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 10 seasons the Bulldogs are 123-9 at home for a nifty 93.2 winning percentage. The Bulldogs went 12-0 at home in 2001, winning by an average of 24.7 ppg. The Bulldogs are 38-1 in The Kennel over the past four seasons with this year's 6-0 start. The 2000 squad was 10-1, and the 1999 Bulldogs completed a 10-0 season in The Kennel, 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. The Bulldogs put together a 34-game home-court-winning streak from 1992-95, which at the time was the country's second-longest active streak. Gonzaga currently has a 21-game home winning streak dating back to the last home game of the 1999-00 campaign, the current streak ranking tied for sixth with Tennessee Tech. Detroit heads the list at 38 after Michigan State University had its 53-game streak snapped Saturday by the University of Wisconsin.
NCAA LEADERS: Gonzaga University senior point guard Dan Dickau is in four NCAA categories - 34th in scoring (20.0 ppg), 5th in 3-pointers made/game (3.7 made/game), 25th in 3-point percentage (46.2%) and 20th in free throw percentage (89.0).
DICKAU ON WOODEN AWARD TOP 30 LIST: Point Guard Dan Dickau is the third straight Gonzaga University representative on the John R. Wood Award Midseason Top 30 candidates announced Dec. 28 for the 2001-02 Wooden Award All-America Team. Casey Calvary, a Wooden All-America pick last season, and Matt Santangelo in 2000 were the previous Bulldogs on the list. Dickau was on The Wooden Award Top 50 announced this past summer. On March 26, 2002, the 10-player Wooden Award All-American Team will be announced. One member of the Wooden Award All-American Team will be selected on Sunday, April 7, 2002, as the recipient of the Wooden Award Trophy as the nation's "Most Outstanding Collegiate Basketball Player of the Year."
FEW'S TWO-YEAR RUN: Gonzaga University head coach Mark Few probably never thought life as a head coach would be so "sweet." But in his first two seasons as head coach the Bulldogs have advanced to the NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen, one of only two NCAA Division I head coaches to accomplish that feat since the bracket expanded to 64 teams in 1985. Gonzaga, defending national champion Duke University and 2000 national champion Michigan State University are the only three schools to reach the Sweet Sixteen each of the past three seasons. Few was an assistant coach on Gonzaga's run to the 1999 Elite Eight. Few's 2-year record of 52-16 places him among elite company for second-year head coaches. His 2-year total of 52 wins has him tied for third for second-year coaches with Dan Monson, his predecessor at Gonzaga, and Ben Carnevale of the University of North Carolina (1945-46).
BULLDOGS HIT 20 WINS AGAIN: With a 26-7 record last season, Gonzaga University hit the 20-win plateau for the 8th time in the last 10 seasons, matching the 2000 win total and second all-time behind only the 1999 school record mark of 28-7. Last season marked the fifth time the Bulldogs have 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.
O-FER FROM THREE: The last time Gonzaga University took the collar from 3-point range was in an 0-for-5 night in The Kennel against the University of Portland on Jan. 27, 1993, a 71-53 Gonzaga victory. Gonzaga has made a 3-point field goal in 284 straight games. Gonzaga made a school record 291 treys in 1999.
TIME REMINDER: Fans are reminded Thursday's game against the University of San Francisco will start at 8 p.m. The change was to allow KHQ-TV to televise the arrival of the Olympic Torch in Spokane and still televise the basketball game on PAX, which is operated by KHQ-TV.
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