Bulldogs End WCC Road Swing At Loyola Marymount Saturday

Jan. 23, 2009

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Men's Basketball Game Facts
Game No. 18 - Loyola Marymount University
Saturday, January 24 - 5 p.m. PST
Gersten Pavilion - Los Angeles, CA
Radio: News Talk 1510 KGA (Spokane);
101.1 FM Rock `N' Roll's Greatest Hits (Spokane)
Pre-game show 30 minutes prior to tipoff
TV: KHQ-TV (Spokane); FSN (check local listing)
No. 23/NR GONZAGA UNIVERSITY BULLDOGS (13-4; 4-0 West Coast)
G -   2 Jeremy Pargo, 6-2, 220, Sr., Chicago, IL
       (9.2 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 6.0 assists, 1.1 steals)
G - 15 Matt Bouldin, 6-5, 224, Jr., Highlands Ranch, CO
       (12.8 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 3.4 assists, 1.7 steals)
G - 32 Steven Gray, 6-5, 208, So., Bainbridge, WA
       (10.4 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 2.6 assists, 1.1 steals, 0.5 blocks)
C -  42 Josh Heytvelt, 6-11, 260, Sr., Clarkston, WA
       (14.7 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 0.5 assists, 0.5 steals, 0.9 blocks)
F -   5 Austin Daye, 6-11, 200, So., Irvine, CA
       (13.8 ppg, 6.9 rpg, 1.1 assists, 0.9 steals, 2.2 blocks)
HEAD COACH:  Mark Few (University of Oregon, 1987)
GONZAGA RECORD:  249-64 (10th year - 20th at GU)  CAREER RECORD:  Same

LOYOLA MARYMOUNT LIONS (1-19; 0-4 West Coast) G - 0 Jarred DuBois, 6-3, 170, Fr., Los Angeles, CA (13.6 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 3.0 assists, 0.9 steals) G - 1 Corey Counts, 5-10, 165, Sr., Los Angeles, CA (8.6 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 1.7 assists, 0.8 steals) F - 24 LaRon Armstead, 6-5, 195, Fr., Los Angeles, CA (9.9 ppg, 5.9 rpg, 1.3 assists, 0.8 steals) F - 40 Kevin Young, 6-8, 185, Fr., Perris, CA (7.9 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 0.7 assists, 1.4 steals, 1.2 blocks) F - 12 Marko Deric, 6-9, 230, Sr., Perth, Australia (3.6 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 0.6 assists, 0.4 steals) HEAD COACH: Max Good (Eastern Kentucky, 1969) LMU RECORD: 1-15 (1st year) CAREER RECORD: 229-228 (15th year) GAMES PRIOR TO GONZAGA: None.

Game No. 19 - Saint Mary's College
Thursday, January 29 - 8 p.m. PST
McCarthey Athletic Center - Spokane, WA
Radio: News Talk 1510 KGA (Spokane);
101.1 FM Rock `N' Roll's Greatest Hits (Spokane)
Pre-game show 30 minutes prior to tipoff
TV: ESPN2
NR/No. 22 SAINT MARY'S COLLEGE GAELS (18-1; 5-0 West Coast)
G -     3 Carlin Hughes, 6-2, 185, Sr., Perth Australia
       (8.6 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 3.4 assists, 1.2 steals)
G -  13 Patrick Mills, 6-0, 175, So., Canberra, Australia
      (18.7 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 4.0 assists, 2.5 steals)
C -  50 Omar Samhan, 6-11, 265, Jr., San Ramon, CA
      (13.9 ppg, 9.8 rpg, 1.7 assists, 0.5 steals, 2.2 blocks)
F -     4 Ian O'Leary, 6-7, 220, Sr., Woodland, CA
      (6.2 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 1.1 assists, 0.8 steals, 0.4 blocks)
F -   20 Diamon Simpson, 6-7, 230, Sr., Hayward, CA
       (12.8 ppg, 10.9 rpg, 0.8 assists, 1.5 steals, 1.9 blocks)
HEAD COACH:  Randy Bennett (UC San Diego, 1986)
SMC RECORD:  145-91 (8th year)  CAREER RECORD:  Same
GAMES PRIOR TO GONZAGA:  None.
NOTE: Ranking is Associated Press and USA Today/ESPN.

Gonzaga University concludes its first West Coast Conference road trip of the season Saturday when the Bulldogs face Loyola Marymount University in a 5 p.m. game at Gersten Pavilion. The Bulldogs are coming in off an 83-69 win at Pepperdine University Thursday, while the Lions fell to the University of Portland 75-59.

Josh Heytvelt scored a season-high 25 points and Matt Bouldin delivered a career-high 10 assists as No. 23 Gonzaga remained perfect in the West Coast Conference by beating Pepperdine 83-69 on Thursday. It was the fifth straight victory for the Bulldogs who scored the first 17 points of the game. Heytvelt, who had six points in the Bulldogs last game, scored the team's first nine points and made his first five field goal attempts. He was two points shy of his career high set at Pepperdine as a sophomore. WCC player of the week Austin Daye had 16 points and 10 rebounds and Bouldin added 14 points for Gonzaga. Keion Bell led Pepperdine with 19 points and a career-high 12 rebounds, and Mychel Thompson had 14 points. Trailing 45-26 at the break, Pepperdine scored nine straight points to start the second half, but would get no closer. The margin of victory against a WCC opponent was the fewest so far for Gonzaga, which beat its first three league opponents by an average of 34.3 points.

Gonzaga University head coach Mark Few can reach another milestone with a win Saturday. The next Bulldog victory will be the 250th of Few's career. He brings a record of 249-64 into Saturday's contest.

Gonzaga University sophomore forward Austin Daye has been named the West Coast Conference Player of the Week, the second straight week a Bulldog has won the award. Daye scored 20+ points in back-to-back wins over Santa Clara University and the University of San Francisco, averaging 22.5 ppg, 8.0 rpg, shooting 75.0 percent from the field on 18-of-24. He also had four blocked shots. He scored a career-high 25 points against USF, breaking his previous best of 22 he equaled this year against Arizona and set last season against SCU. He scored 16 first-half points against USF to spark the Bulldogs, who trailed 14-4, knotted the score at 18 on a Daye jumper and then took a lead they would never relinquish on a Daye 3-pointer. Matt Bouldin took the conference honors the previous week.

After a two-week absence, Gonzaga University is back in the Associated Press Top 25 poll, checking in this week at No. 23. Gonzaga is the third team among the "others receiving votes" in the USA Today/ESPN balloting of the coaches. Gonzaga was ranked 16th by AP and 17th by USA Today/ESPN the week of Dec. 29 for its last poll appearance. The Bulldogs were as high as fourth in both polls this season.

In four West Coast Conference outings Gonzaga University has a +26.7 scoring margin. The Bulldogs downed The University of Portland by 17 points, stopped Santa Clara University by 42 points, the University of San Francisco by 34 and Pepperdine University 14.

Two more players should join the Gonzaga University 1,000-point club before the season is over. Junior Matt Bouldin has 923 points entering this Saturday's game and is averaging 11.1 ppg in his career. Senior Josh Heytvelt has 915 points and is averaging 11.7 ppg. At their current pace, both would be on target to hit the milestone when the Bulldogs host Loyola Marymount University Feb. 19 and Pepperdine University Feb. 21.

Matt Bouldin had a career-high 10 assists Thursday at Pepperdine University and with his 14 points he recorded his first career points/assists double-double. His previous career high was eight last season at Loyola Marymount University. His season high for assists this year was six against the University of Portland in the West Coast Conference opener.

Jeremy Pargo didn't score Thursday at Pepperdine University, the first time he had failed to score since last year at Loyola Marymount University. Those are the only two games he has not scored in over the last three years since becoming a fixture in the starting lineup.

Although Gonzaga University is in the thick of the West Coast Conference chase, the Bulldogs still have two non-conference games remaining on the schedule. The University of Memphis will visit Spokane Feb. 7 for ESPN College Game Day. The morning portion of the show will be in the McCarthey Athletic Center with the game at the downtown Spokane Arena. University of South Carolina-Upstate visits March 3 to conclude the non-conference slate.

There's no place like home, and the McCarthey Athletic Center has become quite the home for the Bulldogs since it opened for the 2004-05 season. Gonzaga is 58-3 in the new facility, winning its first 38 games in the McCarthey Athletic Center. Santa Clara University halted the streak with an 84-73 victory Feb. 12, 2007. That loss also snapped a 50-game home winning streak for the Bulldogs, at the time the longest streak in the nation, as Gonzaga left the old Kennel with 12 straight home victories. Gonzaga's other losses were last season to Washington State University and this year's setback to Portland State University.

Head coach Mark Few picked up his 225th career victory Jan. 19, 2008, against the University of San Diego. With 248 victories, Few is third on the all-time Gonzaga victories chart behind Hank Anderson (290-275 in 21 seasons) and Dan Fitzgerald (252-171 in 15 seasons). Few is the active winningest coach in West Coast Conference games at 116-13, moving ahead of Fitzgerald (112-88) on the all-time wins list. Carroll Williams, Santa Clara University (165-137) and Dick Davey, SCU (122-88) hold the top two spots.

Gonzaga University senior Jeremy Pargo is on the 2009 John R. Wooden Award Pre-Season Top 50 list, and he and teammate Josh Heytvelt have been named to the Naismith Trophy watch list as well. Pargo is eligible for the John R. Wooden All-American Team and Player of the Year Trophy, and he and Heytvelt are also in line for the Naismith Trophy as present by the Atlanta Tip-Off Club. Pargo, a native of Chicago, Ill., was also nominated for the Wooden Award a year ago, while Heytvelt was also a Naismith candidate last season. Pargo becomes the eighth Bulldog selected as a Wooden candidate. Adam Morrison was a 2006 John R. Wooden Top Five All-America selection, Dan Dickau was so honored in 2002 as Gonzaga's inaugural Wooden Award Top Five honoree, and Blake Stepp (2004) and Casey Calvary (2001) were named Wooden Award Top 10 All-Americans. Heytvelt, who hails from nearby Clarkston, Wash., becomes Gonzaga's first two-time Naismith nominee. Adam Morrison is the only other Bulldog to be nominated for the award in 2006. "Both players are very deserving of these nominations," Gonzaga head coach Mark Few said. "They have worked hard on and off the court to elevate their games to the national stage. They are as good as any player in the country at their respective positions."

Gonzaga University head coach Mark Few added two players to the Bulldog fold to letters-of-intent. Sam Dower, a 6-9, 220-pound left-handed senior center/forward from Osseo, Minn., High School and 6-5, 185-pound wing Mangisto "Manny" Arop will join GU next season. Dower averaged 22 ppg and 10 rpg per game in the month of July and 18 ppg and 9 rpg for this past AAU season, according to head coach Marquise Watts of Net Gain Sports, Dower's AAU club. Net Gain Sports won the Twin Cities Summer Classic, won the adidas 64 Gold Division in Las Vegas and went 3-2 in round-robin play in the Duel in the Desert in Phoenix, according to Watts. "He can score for a big guy. He's a lefty so that makes it harder to defend because most people aren't used to seeing a lefthander," Few said. "He can make a difference and is a unique post player. He had a good spring and a great summer." Watts said Dower has worked hard to improve his game. "Every day over the last two years he's gotten better. I don't think he's begun to scratch the surface. His inside-outside game, he can shoot the three and on the block he's a lefty with a great hook shot," Watts said. "He's athletic, he's working on putting on weight and he will fit in real well at Gonzaga." Dower didn't make the varsity team at Osseo until midway through his sophomore year. He averaged 2.5 ppg and 1.6 rpg then blossomed last season to average 13.4 ppg and 5.9 rpg. Last season he scored in double figures 23 times and had double-digit rebounds six times. The Orioles went 28-1, their lone setback 60-59 in the Region finals. He scored a career-high 23 points at Coon Rapids and grabbed a career-high 12 rebounds at Orono. He had several scholarship offers, among them the University of Minnesota, Marquette University and the University of Iowa. Arop, born in the Sudan, currently lives in Hamilton, Ontario, where he plays with Basketball Canada's National Elite Development Academy (NEDA) which is basically Canada's Junior National Team. His first name is pronounced Man-GEESE-toe, his last name pronounced "rop" (the "a" is silent) but he goes simply by Manny. He recently set a single-game scoring NEDA scoring record with 42 points, and this past summer played for Canada in the FIBA Americas Championship in Formosa, Argentina. He averaged 17.0 ppg to rank second, 10.2 rpg to rank third, shot 52.8 percent from the field on 23-for-58 and 87.5 percent from the line on 14-of-15 in the five tournament games as Canada placed fifth. He had 21 points and 9 rebounds against the U.S. in the tourney. "Manny is a high energy player with a great competitive streak," Few said. "His skill level is something to be excited about. He has a great opportunity to be effective for us at both ends of the court." His mother and four brothers left Sudan when he was 9-years-old and lived in Kenya prior to re-locating to Regina, Saskatchewan. Arop then spent a year in Edmonton, Alberta, before joining Basketball Canada's NEDA program, which is a year-round junior development camp.

Gonzaga University head coach Mark Few and wife Marcy gave birth to son Colt Walker Norman Few on New Year's Day, the couple's fourth child joining Austin James (A.J.), Joe and Julia.

Senior walk-on Andrew Sorenson is no more. No, he's still on the team. But the walk-on status was removed in the post-game speeches Saturday following Gonzaga University's win over the University of San Francisco when he was put on scholarship. Assistant coach Tommy Lloyd, who runs Gonzaga's tryout program, got the honors from head coach Mark Few. "He deserves it," Lloyd said. "He works hard in practice, is a great team guy and is probably the fan favorite. We still had a scholarship to use, so we talked it over as a staff and decided Andrew should get it this semester." Sorenson, from Olympia, Wash., tried out in 2004-05 but did not make the team, then tried out again the following year and was give a spot on the roster. This season he has played 32 minutes in 10 appearances, is 6-for-11 from the field, all but one of his attempts from 3-point range where he has gone 6-for-10. He has scored a season-high 18 points and is averaging 1.8 ppg.

Gonzaga University sophomore Robert Sacre continues to recover from a broken right foot suffered Dec. 5 in practice, the same foot he had a pin inserted in earlier this fall to help heal a non-displaced stress fracture. The newest fracture is in front of the previous stress fracture. Recent x-rays indicate the latest fracture is healing. He will undergo frequent x-rays to chart the healing progress. The Vancouver, British Columbia, native will be sidelined at least two more weeks.

Junior Matt Bouldin is on a pretty good five-game stretch. He is 31-for-56 from the field for 55.4 percent, 10-for-24 from 3-point range for 41.7 percent, has 28 assists for 5.6 assists/game, has just six turnovers for a 4.7 assist/turnover ratio and has five steals. He has scored 82 points for 16.4 ppg. He began his current tear with 26 points at the University of Tennessee, a game he went 11-for-20 from the field.

Gonzaga University has won 26 of the last 28 meetings with Loyola Marymount University. The Lions took a 67-61 home victory in 2007 and an 80-74 home victory in 2003 for their only wins in the series since an 83-69 verdict in 1996. Gonzaga leads the overall series 47-22.

Gonzaga University senior Jeremy Pargo became the 30th member of the 1,000-point club for the Bulldogs against Portland State University and has also surpassed the 500-assists plateau. The native of Chicago now has 1,053 career points to surpass John Rillie (1,038) for 28th on the Gonzaga list. Jarrod Davis is 27th with 1,054 and Bryce McPhee 26th with 1,060. Pargo's 524 career assists make him the fourth member of the 500 club behind Matt Santangelo (668), Blake Stepp (640) and John Stockton (554). Pargo's 143 career steals have moved him past Geoff Goss and into fifth, 10 shy of passing Blake Stepp (152) for fourth.

Austin Daye has been on a rebounding tear lately, grabbing 71 rebounds over the past nine games for 7.9 rpg during that stretch. He grabbed 10 rebounds Thursday at Pepperdine University for his sixth double-digit game in his Gonzaga University career while also recording his fourth career double-double with 16 points against the Waves. He had 10 earlier this year against the University of Maryland and 12 in the season opener against Montana State-Billings. His career high 13 came last year against Portland. He had 10 rebounds in his collegiate debut against the University of Montana. His season average is 6.9 rpg as he edged ahead of Josh Heytvelt (6.8) for the team lead.

Micah Downs is showing signs of regaining his touch from the field. Downs, who started the first 12 games of the season, went just 2-for-9 from the field in his next two games off the bench. But over the last three games he's gone 11-for-22 from the field, including 5-for-10 from 3-point range.

Josh Heytvelt has scored in double figures in eight of the last nine games and his 25 points Thursday at Pepperdine University were a season high, two shy of his career high set at Pepperdine in 2007. Over the last three seasons Heytvelt has scored 63 points at Pepperdine for an average of 21.0 ppg. He has grabbed nine rebounds in each of his last two games. He's been hot from the field as well, going 12-for-21 the past two games for 57.1 percent.

Since being out rebound in five straight games, Gonzaga University has come back to win the battle of the boards in each of its last three games. The Bulldogs are at a +3.7 rebounding margin for the season, but are at +9.5 in West Coast Conference play.

 

 

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