Bulldogs Delight 'Kraziness In The Kennel' Full House Of 6,000
SPOKANE, Wash. - A packed house of 6,000 got their first glimpse of the 2011-12 Gonzaga University's men's basketball team at Kraziness in the Kennel Saturday evening sponsored by the Bulldogs and Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Spokane.
For the record, the Red, led by the hot hand of freshman newcomer Kevin Pangos, beat the Blue, paced by the 9 points of Mathis Mönninghoff, 37-33.
Pangos, from Newmarket, Ontario, and the latest in the line of Canadians to find their way to Spokane, was a perfect 6-for-6 from the field, including 3-for-3 from 3-point range while scoring 16 points as the only player in double figures in the 15-minute scrimmage. He also made his only free throw attempt.
"Obviously, Pangos shot the ball really well today. That will be a big key if he can continue to do that. He's a crafty, smart and skilled guy," said head coach Mark Few, who watched the game from the scorer's table as he let his assistants tend to the coaching.
Overall, Few like what he saw as he embarks on his 13th season at head coach and his 23rd campaign overall at Gonzaga.
"I think we took a step up execution wise. We have been spending some time with that. Conversely, when you play against yourself then it looks like defensively we probably took a step back. When one team shoots 61 percent and the other 58, we're not defending that well, but the flipside we shot it well and made plays. I think I'm happy with some of the new guys. It seems to be a smooth transition for pretty much all of them."
Few was also appreciative of the 6,000 fans that showed up for the event which was part of Fall Family Weekend on the GU campus.
"It's great on a Saturday afternoon with a lot of things going on. You get a full house. I think that's a testament to our fans and for the program and the community. It's what makes kind of the whole Gonzaga basketball scene so special."
While Pangos stole the spotlight with his shooting exhibition, the other five newcomers to the program also got their first taste of a full McCarthey Athletic Center. For the Red, Ryan Spangler (Blanchard, Okla.) had 4 points and 3 rebounds, Kyle Dranginis (Nampa, Idaho) grabbed a rebound and dished out a pair of assists and Guy Landry Edi (Paris, France) had 8 points and 3 assists. For the Blue squad, Gary Bell, Jr. (Seattle, Wash.) had 6 points and an assist and Chris Sarbaugh (a product of Spokane's Gonzaga Prep) had 1 rebound.
Among the veterans, Sam Dower had 6 points and a rebound for the Red, while Robert Sacre scored 6 points, grabbed a rebound and had a blocked shot for the Blue. Mönninghoff went 3-for-4 from the field - all from 3-point range - for his 9 points in just 8 minutes of action.
Few said the team has worked hard through the first two weeks of practice.
"They have been going hard," Few said of the squad. "This is really a good group for that. They show up and do their work. They are high-character guys and it means a lot to them. I wouldn't say it's one of my overly-talented teams. We've certainly had teams with a lot more talent than these guys, but the chemistry is probably as good as any team I've had here. The ability to listen and pick up on things quickly is right up there, especially with how many new guys we have."
The Bulldogs will play their lone exhibition game of the season next Friday at 6 p.m. against Carroll College, the lone exhibition prior to the regular-season opener at home Nov. 11 against Eastern Washington University.
Few said it will be good to see a different uniform.
"It's always good. I think it's especially good for our big guys to be able to bang against other people. It's hard for Rob (Sacre), it's hard for Sam (Dower) to have to play against Rob and the same with "E" (Elias Harris), Kelly (Olynyk) and Spangs (Ryan Spangler). It will be nice for those guys to be able to go hit some other people. They enjoy that."
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