Bulldogs Head To Los Angeles Seeking WCC Crown

Feb. 17, 2010

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Men's Basketball Game Facts
Game No. 26 - Loyola Marymount University
Thursday, February 18 - 6 p.m. PST
Gersten Pavilion (4,156) - Los Angeles, CA
Radio: Sports Talk 1510 KGA (Spokane); 101.1 KEYF-FM (Spokane)
Network pre-game show 60 minutes prior to tipoff
TV: KAYU-TV (Spokane); FSN (check local listings)
No. 13/9 GONZAGA UNIVERSITY BULLDOGS (21-4; 9-1 West Coast)
G -   3 Demetri Goodson, 5-11, 164, So., Spring, TX
       (6.9 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 1.8 assists, 1.1 steals)
G - 15 Matt Bouldin, 6-5, 224, Sr., Highlands Ranch, CO
       (16.8 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 4.0 assists, 1.6 steals)
G - 32 Steven Gray, 6-5, 208, Jr., Bainbridge, WA
       (13.4 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 2.7 assists, 1.1 steals, 0.4 blocks)
C - 00 Robert Sacre, 7-0, 247, So., North Vancouver, B.C.
       (10.3 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 0.6 assists, 0.6 steals, 1.6 blocks)
F -  20 Elias Harris, 6-8, 215, Fr., Speyer, Germany
       (15.4 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 1.3 assists, 1.2 steals, 0.3 blocks)
HEAD COACH:  Mark Few (University of Oregon, 1987)
GONZAGA RECORD:  285-70 (11th year - 21st at GU)  CAREER RECORD:  Same

LOYOLA MARYMOUNT UNIVERSITY LIONS (13-13; 4-6 West Coast) G - 1 Vernon Teel, 6-4, 190, Jr., Jamaica Queens, NY (14.9 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 6.2 assists, 1.9 steals, 0.6 blocks) G - 00 Jarred DuBois, 6-3, 180, So., Los Angeles, CA (12.9 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 2.7 assists, 1.4 steals) C - 32 Tom Diederichs, 6-9, 225, So., Seattle, WA (2.4 ppg, 1.7 rpg, 0.5 assists, 0.3 steals) F - 34 Drew Viney, 6-5, 210, So., Villa Park, CA (16.9 ppg, 6.9 rpg, 1.9 assists, 1.1 steals, 1.2 blocks) F - 40 Kevin Young, 6-8, 195, So., Perris, CA (11.0 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 1.0 assists, 1.1 steals, 1.0 blocks) HEAD COACH: Max Good (Sacred Heart, 1965) LMU RECORD: 16-37 (2nd year) CAREER RECORD: 257-261 (16th year) GAMES PRIOR TO GONZAGA: None.

Game No. 27 - Pepperdine University
Saturday, February 20 - 6 p.m. PST
Firestone Fieldhouse (3,104) - Los Angeles, CA
Radio: Sports Talk 1510 KGA (Spokane); 101.1 KEYF-FM (Spokane)
Network pre-game show 60 minutes prior to tipoff
TV: KAYU-TV (Spokane); FSN (check local listings)
PEPPERDINE UNIVERSITY WAVES (7-17; 3-7 West Coast)
G -   3 Keion Bell, 6-3, 200, So., Los Angeles, CA
      (19.4 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 3.6 assists, 1.5 steals)
G -  23 Caleb Willis, 6-2, 215, Fr., Stockbridge, GA
      (1.0 ppg, 0.7 rpg, 0.9 assists)
C -   44 Corbin Moore, 6-4, 240, So., Cypress, CA
       (2.7 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 0.3 assists, 0.4 blocks)
F -   15 Mychel Thompson, 6-7, 200, Jr., Portland, OR
       (12.3 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 1.9 assists, 1.0 steals, 0.7 blocks)
F -   41 Taylor Darby, 6-8, 200, So., San Marcos, CA
       (5.9 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 0.3 assists, 0.3 steals, 0.3 blocks)
HEAD COACH:  Tom Ausbury (Wyoming, 1968)
PU RECORD:  141-101(8th year)  CAREER RECORD:  226-189 (14th year).
GAMES PRIOR TO GONZAGA:  2/18 vs. Portland.
NOTE: Ranking is Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today.

Gonzaga University men's basketball can be heard on Sports Radio 1510 KGA and KEYF-FM 101.1. The network pre-game show begins one hour prior to tipoff. Tom Hudson returns for his eighth season behind the microphone calling the action and former Bulldog Richard Fox is back alongside Hudson as the analyst for the third season. An expanded 45-minute post-game show also follows every game. Gonzaga's radio rights are owned by IMG, the multi-media rights partner for Gonzaga University athletics, which reached a 9-year agreement with Radio Spokane to air Bulldog basketball.

KHQ-TV in Spokane and FSN will once again televise every Gonzaga University game not televised by another entity. In all, 14 regular-season games will be aired locally. Greg Heister returns for his ninth season behind the microphone as the television voice of the Bulldogs. Craig Ehlo begins his fourth season as the color commentator next to Heister. IMG, the multi-media rights partner for Gonzaga University athletics, announced a 10-year extension with KHQ-TV and FSN Northwest for broadcast of Gonzaga men's basketball and other events programming through the 2017-18 season.

The Mark Few TV Show will air every Sunday following NFL football on KHQ-TV, and every Tuesday at 7 p.m. on FSN. Greg Heister will host. The Mark Few Radio Show will air Monday from noon-1 p.m. on Sports Radio 1510 KGA unless the Bulldogs are traveling or have a game. The "GU Coaches Show" hosted by Tom Hudson will also air on 1510 KGA every Tuesday from 7-8 p.m.

That shocking loss at San Francisco two weeks ago may have been just what No. 16 Gonzaga needed. Steven Gray scored 19 points and Matt Bouldin added 16 as Gonzaga pounded San Diego 82-65 on for its fourth consecutive win. The Zags remained in first place in the West Coast Conference, a position that seemed in peril after they lost to a team with a losing record on Jan. 30. Since that overtime loss, Gonzaga has pounded its top two WCC rivals, Portland and Saint Mary's, and won a non-conference game at Memphis. San Diego offered little resistance. The Zags opened the game with a 19-0 lead after five minutes and shot 73.9 percent in the first half. Reserve Manny Arop added a career-high 13 points and grabbed nine rebounds for Gonzaga, which finished with 56 percent shooting while holding the depleted Toreros to 41 percent. San Diego has lost nine of its past 10 games and is in the conference cellar. Leading scorer Brandon Johnson, hobbled by a groin injury, came off the bench to score 21 points and become the all-time leading scorer for the Toreros. Johnson also grabbed eight rebounds, even though he did not enter the game until eight minutes were gone. The Toreros could barely get a shot off in the early going. They didn't get on the scoreboard until 14:06 left when Patrick McCollum's shot was swatted away by Gonzaga's Will Foster, resulting in a goaltending call. McCollum made their first actual basket with 13 minutes left. But Gonzaga scored the next six points for a 27-4 lead. Johnson finally went into the game with 12 minutes left in the first half and scored eight points to spark a 21-8 run that pulled the Toreros to 35-25. But the Zags outscored them 12-6 over the final five minutes for a 47-31 halftime lead. San Diego got within 12 points early in the second half when a pair of free throws by Ken Rancifer cut Gonzaga's lead to 55-43. Rancifer finished with 13 points. But Arop scored nine of Gonzaga's points during a 13-0 run that built a 68-43 lead with 10:52 left, and the Zags cruised from there.

Looking to all but put the finishing touches on a 10th straight West Coast Conference regular-season crown, Gonzaga University heads to Los Angeles this weekend to conclude the road portion of the WCC campaign. The Bulldogs face Loyola Marymount University Thursday and Pepperdine University Saturday in a pair of 6 p.m. tipoffs. The Bulldogs have at least a two-game lead over the rest of the field after Saint Mary's College came to the Pacific Northwest last weekend and suffered losses to Gonzaga and the University of Portland. That left the 8-3 Gaels and 7-3 Portland both two games behind in the loss column behind the 9-1 Bulldogs. Two Gonzaga wins this week will clinch no worse than a share of the WCC title but will automatically give the Bulldogs the No. 1 seed into the WCC Tournament as Gonzaga swept the season series from both Saint Mary's and Portland so would have the tie-breaker in both cases.

Gonzaga University won the first meeting against Loyola Marymount University this season 85-69, giving the Bulldogs 29 wins in the last 31 meetings with the Lions. LMU's only two wins since 1996 were an 80-74 victory in 2003 and 67-61 in 2007, both games in Los Angeles. Gonzaga has won five straight since LMU's win in 2007. The Lions' last six wins in the series - dating back to 1991 - have all come in Los Angeles. Gonzaga's win in Spokane in the first meeting this season was the Bulldogs 19th straight win over the Lions at home, the last LMU victory in Spokane coming in the first meeting between the teams in the 1991 season. LMU had won 10 straight in the series through 1991, but since then Gonzaga has won 36-of-41 meetings.

Gonzaga University hit the 20-win plateau last Thursday for the 13th straight season and for the 16th time in the last 17 years. Gonzaga head coach Mark Few has never not won 20 games in his 11 years on the Bulldog bench, including a 29-win season in 2002 to set a single-season mark for wins which was matched by the 2006 squad. This year's team is now 21-4.

Gonzaga University head coach Mark Few moved into second place on the school's all-time winningest coaches list with the Bulldogs victory Feb. 5, 2009, at the University of Portland. Few, in his 11th season, is now 285-70 and moved ahead of Dan Fitzgerald (252-171 in 15 years). Hank Anderson (290-275 in 21 seasons) is the all-time leader. He picked up his 275th win Jan. 2, 2010, against the University of Illinois at the United Center in Chicago. Few is the active winningest coach in West Coast Conference games at 136-14, moving ahead of Fitzgerald (112-88) on the all-time wins list. Few also moved ahead of Dick Davey of Santa Clara University (122-88) for second with Gonzaga's victory at the University of San Francisco Feb. 14, 2009. Carroll Williams, SCU (165-137) holds the top spot.

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 72-4 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 suffered its first loss at home this season Dec. 5 when Wake Forest University escaped with a 77-75 decision. Gonzaga's other losses were during the 2008 season to Washington State University and last year to Portland State University.

Canadians dot the 2010 Gonzaga University roster - four of them to be exact. Three of them come to the Bulldogs from the province of British Columbia to the north of Spokane. Redshirt sophomore center Robert Sacre is from North Vancouver, B.C., freshman forward Kelly Olynyk hails from Kamloops, B.C., and redshirt sophomore forward Bol Kong is from Vancouver, B.C. Mangisto "Manny" Arop is from Edmonton, Alberta, but spent the past few years in Hamilton, Ontario, while playing with NEDA, Basketball Canada's National Elite Development Academy.

Don't forget the Texans as sophomore guard Demetri Goodson and freshman guard G.J. Vilarino hail from the Lone Star State. But in a state where everything is big, these two Gonzaga University Bulldogs might prove that good things do come in small packages. Goodson, from Spring, Texas, outside of Houston, stretches the tape measure to 5-11. Vilarino, from McKinney, Texas, located almost due north of Dallas, stands 6-0.

The West Coast Conference coaches have tabbed Gonzaga University to win its 10th straight WCC regular-season title. The Bulldogs earned six first-place votes and 48 points to edge the University of Portland with the other two first-place votes and 44 points. Saint Mary's College was third with 34 points.

The nine straight West Coast Conference regular-season titles by Gonzaga University marks the longest current streak in the nation and ranks tied for fourth all-time in the NCAA Division I ranks, the Bulldogs knotting the University of Kentucky. The Wildcats won nine straight SEC crowns from 1944-52. UCLA's 13 Pacific-10 Conference titles from 1967-79 head the list.

Gonzaga University moved back into the Top 10 in the ESPN/USA Today men's basketball poll this week, checking in at No. 9. The Bulldogs spent two weeks in the Top 10 earlier this season at No. 10 and, a week later, No. 8. The Bulldogs jumped three spots in the Associated Press balloting to No. 13. The University of Kansas maintained the top spot for a third straight week. Duke University, which defeated Gonzaga in December at Madison Square Garden, is sixth in both polls this week. Michigan State University, a 75-71 winner over Gonzaga in East Lansing in the second game of the season, fell out of the 10th spot in both polls to 11th this week. The University of Wisconsin, which lost to Gonzaga in the EA Sports Maui Invitational semifinals, dropped three spots to 14th in the AP poll and three spots to 16th in the ESPN/USA Today rankings. Wake Forest University, a two-point winner over the Bulldogs in the McCarthey Athletic Center in December, is ranked for the first time this season. The Demon Deacons are 23rd in AP and 25th in ESPN./USA Today. The Bulldogs have been in the ranked in at least one poll for 11 straight weeks.

Gonzaga University has extended its string of consecutive games with a 3-pointer to 551. The last time the Bulldogs didn't connect from three was Jan. 27, 1993, when they went 0-for-5 at the University of Portland. UNLV holds the all-time record with 738 that started Nov. 26, 1986, through the start of the current season.

Gonzaga University put together its two best shooting nights last week since the first time the Bulldogs faced Loyola Marymount University and Pepperdine University. The Bulldogs hit 32-of-59 shots from the field for 54.2 percent against Saint Mary's College for their best shooting night in eight games, then followed with a 27-for-48 night for 56.3 percent against the University of San Diego two nights later. It's the first time the Zags had back-to-back 50.0 percent nights since shooting 53.2 percent against Pepperdine and 51.8 percent against LMU. The 56.3 percent against USD was the best outing for the Bulldogs since a 58.7 percent at Saint Mary's Jan. 14, a stretch of nine games.

Since committing a season-high 21 turnovers in the 35-point loss to Duke University in December, Gonzaga University has taken better care of the basketball over the last 11 games. The Bulldogs are averaging 12.4 turnovers per game in that stretch that began with a season-low 7 turnovers at the University of Portland to begin West Coast Conference play. The Bulldogs have no more than 12 turnovers in any of their last four games.

Gonzaga University has won the battle of the boards in all 13 of the last 14 games and in all but six games this season. Duke University out-rebounded the Bulldogs 45-35, but since then only Saint Mary's College last Thursday (34-32) has been able to win the boards against the Zags. Gonzaga had a streak of 12 straight games of winning the boards snapped last Thursday against the Gaels. The Bulldogs are +5.6 overall on the boards this season and +6.9 in West Coast Conference play.

Since suffering three straight losses early last season, Gonzaga University has gone 41-6. Gonzaga lost to the University of Connecticut in the Battle in Seattle, lost at home to Portland State University and fell at the University of Utah for just the third three-game losing streak in head coach Mark Few's tenure. The Zags then won 20 of their final 22 games last season and are off to a 21-4 start this season.

Junior Rob Sacre, who had a stretch of six straight games where he didn't score more than 8 points, has scored in double figures in three of the last four games. He scored 13 at the University of San Francisco to snap the double-digit drought, scored 5 against the University of Portland, had 13 in back-to-back games at the University of Memphis and Saint Mary's College, then poured in 11 points against the University of San Diego. He's shooting an even 50.0 percent from the field in the last five games on 18-for-36.

Freshman Mangisto "Manny" Arop broke loose for a season-high 13 points Saturday against the University of San Diego. It was his second double-digit game of the season, the other a 10-point outing against Eastern Washington University. Arop, who had taken no more than four shots in a game since a 3-for-9 day against Duke University, went 5-for-6 from the field, made his only 3-point attempt and 2-for-4 from the free throw line against USD. He had scored just 14 points over his last six games heading into Saturday.

Junior Steven Gray had 19 points in the win over the University of San Diego, his highest output since scoring 19 at Santa Clara University. He scored a career-high 27 points earlier this season against the University of Colorado.

 

 

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