Men's Basketball Sweeps WCC Major Honors
Feb. 26, 2001
SAN BRUNO, Calif. - Gonzaga University swept the four major honors on the All-West Coast men's basketball team announced today.
Head coach Mark Few was tabbed Coach of the Year, senior Casey Calvary was named the Player of the Year, senior Mark Spink was named Defender of the Year and Blake Stepp was selected as Freshman of the Year in a vote of the conference coaches.
Few guided the Bulldogs to a school record 13-1 record in WCC play for the regular-season title, the Bulldogs taking a 21-6 record into this weekend's WCC Tournament at the University of San Diego. He is 47-15 in his 2-year career. It's the fourth time the Bulldogs have received WCC Coach of the Year honors, Dan Monson the last in 1998.
Calvary, a 6-8 forward from Tacoma, Wash., averaged 19.6 points, 6.4 rebounds and 1.3 blocks per game this season. He scored a career-high 29 points in a win over the University of Washington, one of 12 games of 20 or more points this season. He also recorded three double-doubles this season to give him 10 in his career. He is currently 10th on Gonzaga's career scoring charts with 1,410 points and is fourth in career rebounds with 711, becoming just the fourth player in Gonaga history to reach 1,000 points and 700 rebounds. He shares the all-time WCC blocked shots lead with Hondre Brewer of the University of San Francisco, both players entering the WCC Tournament with 194. Calvary is the fourth Gonzaga player to receive the honor, joining John Stockton (1984), Jeff Brown (1994) and Bakari Hendrix (1998).
Spink, a 6-8 forward from Bellingham, Wash., is one of the most relentless defenders in the WCC, averaging 5.7 rebounds, 1.0 blocks and 0.8 steals per game to go with his 8.0 points at the offensive end. After coming off the bench each of the first three seasons in his career, he joined the starting lineup this season and was one of just two Bulldogs to start all 27 games. He grabbed a career-high 11 rebounds against the University of Portland. Spink is the second straight Bulldog to garner Defender of the Year honors, Mike Nilson receiving the nod last season.
Stepp blossomed onto the collegiate scene, starting all 27 games as a true freshman. The 6-4 guard out of Eugene, Ore., was pressed into duty as point guard five games into the season when Dickau was sidelined for nine games. He scored a season-high 21 points at the University of Arizona and helped keep the Bulldogs in striking range with a 6-for-10 night from 3-point range, the Wildcats pulling away late for the victory. He averaged 10.2 ppg. Stepp is the second Gonzaga player to receive the award, Matt Santangelo sharing the honor with Brian Jones of Santa Clara University in 1997.
Dickau was faced with the task of replacing Santangelo, a three-time All-WCC first-team selection, and it didn't take him long to earn the praise of the coaches and the applause of the fans. He started the first four games of the season, then suffered a broken left index finger late in the Bulldogs' game at Arizona that sidelined him for nine games. He came back at the start of WCC play, opening conference play with a pair of double-doubles. He scored 13 points and had 10 assists at San Francisco, then came back with 15 points and 12 assists at Saint Mary's, the latter one shy of the Gonzaga single-game assists record. He scored 20 points against Arizona, 25 at home against the University of San Diego and then smashed his career best with 39 points at Santa Clara University the final weekend of the regular season. He scored 31 of his points in the second half, and helped cut a 19-point SCU lead to 6 late in the game. He came back on the last night of the WCC season at San Diego and drilled a 3-pointer with 1:36 to play to give Gonzaga a 69-67 lead, then drained a 23-footer with 2.8 seconds to play to give the Bulldogs a 72-69 win. Dickau, a 6-0 guard from Vancouver, Wash., averaged 17.8 ppg and 6.7 assists/game.
Gourde came back from September knee surgery to have a solid season for the Bulldogs. He started the final 15 games of the season after starting three games early in the year. He matched his career high with 22 points at San Diego in the final game of the regular season, one of his 11 double-digit scoring games of the season. He had his first career double-double with 20 points and 11 rebounds against Santa Clara in The Kennel. For the season the 6-8 forward from Vancouver, Wash., averaged 8.6 ppg and 3.7 rpg.
2001 ALL-WEST COAST CONFERENCE TEAM
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