Australia Institute of Sport Visits Friday
Nov. 14, 2002
SPOKANE, Wash. - Gonzaga University head men's basketball coach Mark Few will get one last exhibition look at his charges Friday night in The Kennel when the Australia Institute of Sport plays its next-to-last game of a 10-game U.S. tour.
Tipoff is slated for 8 p.m. in The Kennel following the Bulldogs' women's volleyball match against the University of San Diego.
Gonzaga defeated the Northwest All-Stars 108-88 last Friday, the Bulldogs without the services of center Cory Violette (hip), point guard Winston Brooks (shoulder) and forward Ronny Turiaf (shoulder). Few still didn't know Thursday afternoon what his starting lineup or his rotation would look like come Friday.
"We probably won't know who is available until Friday," Few said. "We hope to have all three players back. All three have been limited in what we've let them do this week."
AIS will definitely give the Bulldogs a good matchup inside, bringing nine players 6-6 or taller. Andrew Bogut, a 6-9 forward/center, is one of the most talented of the bunch, with 7-3 reserve center Sam Harris also grabbing a lot of the attention of the four NBA scouts who are expected to be in attendance Friday night.
That should give Gonzaga's frontline of Violette (6-8), Turiaf (6-10), Zach Gourde (6-8) and Richard Fox (6-11) a good test. Fox scored a game-high 26 points to lead the Bulldogs last week as he saw increased minutes with Violette sidelined. Fox, a junior transfer from the University of Colorado, also hauled in eight rebounds. Gourde poured in 20 points.
"They are young, but they have some talented players and are very organized in what they do," Few said of the visitors. "They have a couple of players who the pro scouts are seriously evaluating."
AIS has gone 2-5 on their current tour entering a Thursday game at Washington State University. Friday's game will be their fourth in five nights. AIS defeated Portland State University 73-63 on Monday and lost 94-84 at Boise State University on Wednesday prior to heading to Pullman for Thursday's contest.
Few is taking much the same approach he took into last Friday's exhibition.
"We still have a lot of work to do, so this game will be about us trying to fine tune some facets of our game," Few said. "That's why we hope to be at full strength so the players will get an opportunity to work together and so the coaches can get a chance to look at some combinations and our rotation."
The Bulldogs open the regular season at home one week from Friday against Hofstra University. Following the opener the Bulldogs board a plane early Saturday morning for Maui and a Monday date with the University of Utah in the first round of the Maui Invitational.
Tickets for Friday's exhibition are still available by calling the Gonzaga ticket office at (509) 323-4202. Tickets are $15 and phone orders must be secured with a credit card. Gonzaga officials also expect tickets to be available at the gate Friday night.
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