Bulldogs Go For EA Sports Maui Invitational Title Tonight

Nov. 25, 2009

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Men's Basketball Game Facts
Game No. 6 - University of Cincinnati
EA Sports Maui Invitational Championship
Wednesday, November 25 - 7 p.m. PST
Lahaina Civic Center (2,400) - Lahaina, Maui
Radio: Sports Talk 1510 KGA (Spokane); 101.1 KEYF-FM (Spokane)
Network pre-game show 60 minutes prior to tipoff
TV: ESPN
GONZAGA UNIVERSITY BULLDOGS (4-1; 0-0 West Coast)
G -   3 Demetri Goodson, 5-11, 164, So., Spring, TX
       (6.2 ppg, 1.0 rpg, 1.6 assists, 2.0 steals)
G - 15 Matt Bouldin, 6-5, 224, Sr., Highlands Ranch, CO
       (18.2 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 4.2 assists, 2.4 steals)
G - 32 Steven Gray, 6-5, 208, Jr., Bainbridge, WA
       (16.4 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 3.0 assists, 0.8 steals, 0.8.0 blocks)
C - 00 Robert Sacre, 7-0, 247, So., North Vancouver, B.C.
       (14.4 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 1.2 blocks)
F -  20 Elias Harris, 6-8, 215, Fr., Speyer, Germany
       (12.6 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 0.6 assists, 1.2 steals, 0.4 blocks)
HEAD COACH:  Mark Few (University of Oregon, 1987)
GONZAGA RECORD:  268-67 (11th year - 21st at GU)  CAREER RECORD:  Same

UNIVERSITY OF CINCINNATI BEARCATS (4-0; 0-0 Big East) G - 1 Cashmere Wright, 6-0, 175, Fr., Savannah, GA (7.3 ppg, 1.5 rpg, 1.8 assists, 1.3 steals) G - 5 Deonta Vaughn, 6-1, 190, Sr., Indianapolis, IN (13.0 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 4.8 assists, 1.5 steals) F - 22 Rashad Bishop, 6-6, 225, Jr., Newark, NJ (10.5 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 2.8 assists, 1.0 steals) F - 33 Lance Stephenson, 6-5, 210, Fr., Brooklyn, NY (10.5 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 2.0 assists, 1.3 steals, 0.3 blocks) F - 34 Yancy Gates, 6-9, 260, So., Cincinnati, OH (13.0 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 1.5 assists, 0.3 steals, 1.8 blocks) HEAD COACH: Mick Cronin (Cincinnati, 1997) UC RECORD: 46-52 (4th year) CAREER RECORD: 115-76 (7th year) GAMES PRIOR TO GONZAGA: None.

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. with the exception of Nov. 17 and Nov. 24.

Gonzaga University is back in the championship game of the EA Sports Maui Invitational following a 74-61 victory over the University of Wisconsin on Tuesday. Matt Bouldin scored 18 points to lead four Bulldogs in double figures Tuesday. But the inside play of the Bulldogs Robert Sacre and Elias Harris set the tone early in what figured to be a physical game. After Steven Gray opened the game with a layin off a feed from Bouldin, Sacre and Harris combined to score the next 12 Bulldog points in the first seven minutes of the game. Sacre went a perfect 6-for-6 from the free throw line in that stretch. Harris had a rebound put-back off a Bouldin miss and a layin off a baseline cut and a pretty feed from Bouldin, who finished with a game-high five assists. Gonzaga was clinging to a 19-18 advantage nearing the midway point of the first half when Gray scored back-to-back layins for a 23-18 lead. The second basket came on a slash to the baseline off an inbounds pass from Bouldin. After a Keaton Nankivil free throw made it 23-19, the Bulldogs rattled off the next nine points to open a 13-point lead, their biggest of the half. Sacre began the 9-0 run with a 12-footer inside the lane and Bouldin drove the lane and was fouled for a 3-point play. Sacre blocked a Jordan Taylor shot and batted the ball toward mid-court, where it was kicked and fumbled all the way to the other end before Gray corralled the loose ball in the scramble and got an easy layin. Goodson capped the run with his coast-to-coast fast break layin set up by a Grant Gibbs rebound and the Bulldogs were up 32-19. Wisconsin cut the margin to five at 38-33 with a 14-6 run of its own, Jon Leuer and Tim Jarmusz each hitting a pair of free throws and Leuer connecting on a jumper. Bouldin set up Bol King for a layin for the Bulldogs, Jason Bohannon countered with a 3-pointer from the top of the circle for the Badgers and Harris drilled a trey. But Taylor, who came off the bench to lead all scorers with 19 points, hit a dipsy-doo layin and a jumper from the top of the key sandwiched around a Harris free throw to cut the Gonzaga lead to 38-33. Gray scored on a reverse layin off another inbounds play and Bouldin hit from the right top of the elbow to give Gonzaga a 10-point halftime lead, 43-33. The Bulldogs extended their lead to 14 at 52-48 when Goodson delivered a coast-to-coast layup with 16:41 to play. Wisconsin cut the deficit to as few as six, the last time with 7:43 remaining as they went on a 16-8 spurt as the Bulldogs missed four straight shots after the Goodson layin, went 3-for-10 from the field and had three turnovers over the next nine minutes. Sacre's hook in the lane and foul shot completed the 3-point play and helped get the Bulldogs untracked. Goodson hit an 8-foot floater, Kelly Olynyk and Bouldin each made a pair of free throws and Bouldin had a scoop layin for a 71-56 lead with 3:20 to play. Wisconsin had just two field goals in the last 7:43, one coming with 1:31 to go and the other with 16 ticks left on the clock.

This marks the third trip to the EA Sports Maui Invitational for Gonzaga University. The Bulldogs are 5-3 after Tuesday's win. Their last trip came in 2005, Gonzaga defeating 23rd-ranked University of Maryland 88-76, topping 12th-ranked Michigan State University 109-106 in triple overtime and losing in the title game to third-ranked University of Connecticut 65-63. The Bulldogs first trip came in 2002, the 20th-ranked Zags going 1-2. After defeating the University of Utah 71-52 in the opening round, Gonzaga fell to No. 19 Indiana University 76-75 and to No. 15 University of Kentucky 80-72.

Gonzaga University will be making its second appearance in the EA Sports Maui Invitational championship game when the Bulldogs square off against the University of Cincinnati Wednesday at 7 p.m. Pacific Time. The Bulldogs advanced to the 2005 title game in their last appearance in Maui, falling to the University of Connecticut 65-63.

There will definitely be a first-time champion crowned in the EA Sports Maui Invitational Wednesday night. Gonzaga is in its third trip to Maui and has yet to raise the Wayne Duke Trophy, while the Bearcats are on their maiden voyage in Maui. Cincinnati will be trying to become the first first-time participant since the University of Dayton in 2003 to claim the title. Nine previous first-time participants have claimed the title in the 25 previous tournaments.

Gonzaga University and the University of Cincinnati will be meeting for the third time in Wednesday title game of the EA Sports Maui Invitational. The last meeting came in the 2003 NCAA Tournament First Round inb Salt Lake City, Utah, the Bulldogs taking a 74-69 victory. The first meeting came Dec. 4, 1999, when Gonzaga faced the top-ranked Bearcats led by Player of the Year Kenyon Martin in the Rock-N-Roll Shootout in Cleveland. Cincinnati won that contest 75-68.

Could this be the year Gonzaga advances to the NCAA Final Four? There's a chance if you look at the history of the EA Sports Maui Invitational and the connection with the Final Four. Three winners in Maui - the University of Michigan in 1988 and the University of North Carolina in 2005 and again in 2008 - went on to capture the NCAA Tournament the following spring. Three other Maui champions - UNC in 1999, the University of Arizona in 2000 and UCLA in 2006 - advanced to the Final Four the following spring.

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 268-67 and moved ahead of Dan Fitzgerald (252-171 in 15 years). Hank Anderson (290-275 in 21 seasons) is the all-time leader. Few is the active winningest coach in West Coast Conference games at 127-13, 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.

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 Basketball Canada's National Elite Development Academy (NEDA).

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.

Gonzaga University senior guard Matt Bouldin has been named to the 2009-10 preseason candidates for the John R. Wooden Award All-American Team and Player of the Year trophy announced by Richard "Duke" Llewellyn, Wooden Award Chairman and founder. The list is comprised of 50 student-athletes who, based on last year's individual performance and team records, are the early frontrunners for college basketball's most prestigious honor. Bouldin becomes the eighth Bulldog to be nominated for the award. The Bulldogs have had two John R. Wooden Award Top Five recipients, Adam Morrison in 2006 and Dan Dickau in 2002. Blake Stepp was a Top 10 All-American in 2004 and Casey Calvary received the same recognition in 2001. Matt Santangelo (2000), Cory Violette (2003-04), Ronny Turiaf (2004-05) and Jeremy Pargo (2008-09) are the other Bulldogs to receive nominations. Bouldin started 33 of 34 games a year ago, his only non-start coming on Senior Night. The native of Highlands Ranch, Colo., averaged 13.6 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 3.4 assists/game and shot 49.1 percent from the field, going 156-for-318. He also shot 42.3 percent from 3-point range, connecting on 55-of-130 from long range.

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 64-3 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 during the 2008 season to Washington State University and last year's setback to Portland State University.

Senior Matt Bouldin moved past 2009 teammate Jeremy Pargo and into 18th on the all-time Gonzaga University scoring charts with his 18 points Tuesday, giving him 1,260 points. Bouldin needs 81 points to move past John Stockton (1,340 from 1981-84).

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 just missed moving into the Top 25 this week. The Bulldogs are the first team also receiving votes with 90 points in this week's Associated Press Top 25, while the Bulldogs are the third team also receiving votes in the ESPN/USA Today voting with 107 points. Oklahoma is 25th in the AP poll with 107 points, while Georgia Tech University is 25th in the ESPN/USA Today balloting with 56 points. The two teams ahead of the Zags in the receiving votes category are the University of Oklahoma with 53 and Wake Forest University with 40. Wake Forest visits Gonzaga Dec. 5. Michigan State University, who defeated Gonzaga last week 75-71 in Lansing, Mich., remained second in both polls behind No. 1 University of Kansas.

 

 

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