Ranked Bulldogs, Cougars Ready For Showdown

Dec. 5, 2007

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Men's Basketball Game Facts
Game No. 9 - Washington State University
Wednesday, December 5 - 8 p.m.
McCarthey Athletic Center - Spokane, WA
Radio: News Talk 1510 KGA (Spokane)
Pre-game show 30 minutes prior to tipoff
No. 17/19 GONZAGA UNIVERSITY BULLDOGS (7-1; 0-0 West Coast)
G -   2 Jeremy Pargo, 6-2, 219, Jr., Chicago, IL
       (12.3 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 5.1 assists, 0.8 steals, 0.6 blocks)
G - 15 Matt Bouldin, 6-5, 214, So., Highlands Ranch, CO
       (14.4 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 2.5 assists, 1.0 steals)
G - 22 Micah Downs, 6-8, 190, Jr., Kirkland, WA
       (9.1 ppg, 5.9 rpg, 2.1 assists, 1.3 steals, 0.3 blocks)
F -  25 David Pendergraft, 6-6, 223, Sr., Brewster, WA
       (8.6 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 1.5 assists, 0.4 steals, 0.3 blocks)
F -  31 Abdullahi Kuso, 6-9, 241, Sr., Kaduna, Nigeria
      (7.9 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 0.3 assists, 0.4 steals, 1.1 blocks)
HEAD COACH:  Mark Few (University of Oregon, 1987)
GONZAGA RECORD:  218-53 (9th year - 19th at GU)  CAREER RECORD:  Same

No. 8/6 WASHINGTON STATE COUGARS (7-0; 0-0 Pacific-10) G - 2 Derrick Low, 6-2, 196, Sr., Honolulu, HI (14.6 ppg, 1.7 rpg, 1.0 assists, 1.4 steals) G - 10 Taylor Rochestie, 6-1, 186, Jr., Santa Barbara, CA (11.3 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 5.0 assists, 1.1 steals) G - 25 Kyle Weaver, 6-6, 201, Sr., Beloit, WI (12.0 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 4.0 assists, 1.1 steals, 0.6 blocks) C - 11 Aron Baynes, 6-10, 270, Jr., Cairns, Australia (9.4 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 0.7 blocks) F - 34 Robbie Cowgill, 6-10, 211, Sr., Austin, TX (8.7 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 0.7 assists, 0.4 steals, 1.0 blocks) HEAD COACH: Tony Bennett (Wisconsin-Green Bay, 1992) WSU RECORD: 33-8 (2nd year) CAREER RECORD: Same. GAMES PRIOR TO GONZAGA: None.

Game No. 10 - Cal State Northridge
Saturday, December 8 - 5 p.m.
McCarthey Athletic Center - Spokane, WA
Radio: News Talk 1510 KGA (Spokane)
Pre-game show 30 minutes prior to tipoff
TV: KHQ-TV (Spokane); KSTW-TV CW Seattle (check local listing)
G -   4 Rob Haynes, 6-4, 185, Jr., Cerritos, CA
      (8.0 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 0.8 assists, 0.3 steals)
G -  15 Paul Wayne, 6-1, 165, Jr., Washington, D.C.
      (4.5 ppg, 1.5 rpg, 3.2 assists, 1.3 steals)
C -  32 Calvin Chitwood, 6-8, 220, Sr., Phoenix, AZ
      (13.3 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 0.8 assists, 1.5 steals, 2.0 blocks)
F -   1 Jonathan Heard, 6-6, 185, Sr., Inglewood, CA
      (14.5 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 1.3 assists, 1.2 steals)
F -  11 Jayme Miller, 6-8, 240, Sr., Newbury Park, CA
      (4.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 0.3 assists, 0.3 steals)
HEAD COACH:  Bobby Braswell (Cal State Northridge, 1985)
CSN RECORD:  173-158 (12th year)  CAREER RECORD:  Same.
GAMES PRIOR TO GONZAGA:  12/5 vs. Utah Valley State.
NOTE: Poll rankings are Associated Press and USA Today/ESPN, respectively.

"The Game" is here. Since the final horn went off last Dec. 5 in Pullman, the state has been abuzz looking forward to the rematch exactly one year to the day after Washington State University took a 77-67 win over 18th-ranked Gonzaga University, snapping Gonzaga's seven-game winning streak in the series. The Bulldogs went on to a 23-11 season and a ninth straight NCAA Tournament appearance. WSU finished 26-8 and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

Wednesday's game between Gonzaga University, ranked 17th in Associated Press and 19th in USA Today/ESPN polls, and Washington State University (6th USA Today/8th AP) will be the first meeting of ranked teams in the series. Gonzaga has been ranked seven times when meeting the Cougars, while WSU has never come into the Gonzaga game ranked. It will be just the second time two ranked teams have met on the Gonzaga campus, No. 18 Gonzaga downing No. 8 University of Washington 97-77 last season.

Gonzaga University will be hosting a ranked team on campus for just the seventh time in school history when Washington State University visits Wednesday. The University of Washington has been the last ranked team to visit campus - last year No. 8 in a 97-77 Gonzaga win and Dec. 1, 2004, when the Bulldogs captured a 99-87 victory over the 14th-ranked Huskies in the first season of the McCarthey Athletic Center. Prior to that you have to go back to 1990 to find the last time a ranked team came on campus. Gonzaga has hosted five ranked teams in either the old Spokane Coliseum or the new Spokane Arena. Second-ranked Bradley University is the highest-ranked team to ever visit Spokane to play the Bulldogs, the Braves defeating Gonzaga 80-69 on Feb. 4, 1960, in the Spokane Coliseum. Wednesday's WSU game will mark just the second time Gonzaga has been ranked against a ranked opponent on campus, last year's UW game the first.

Gonzaga University moved up two spots to 17th in the Associated Press poll this week, while remaining 19th for the second straight week in the USA Today/WSPN vote of coaches. The Bulldogs, who spent three straight weeks at 14th in both polls, received 581 points in the Associated Press Top 25, and 242 in the USA Today/ESPN balloting after going 2-0 last week.

Three teams on the Gonzaga University schedule remain ranked in the Top 15 of both polls this week. The Bulldogs will travel to No. 2 University of Memphis Jan. 25, host 6th-ranked Washington State University Wednesday in the McCarthey Athletic Center and play No. 10 (AP)/No. 12 (ESPN/USA Today) University of Tennessee in The Battle in Seattle Dec. 29.

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 42-1 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 University earned an impressive East Coast sweep last week, downing Saint Joseph's University 70-65 in overtime and then downing the University of Connecticut 85-82 at the Hartford Hall of Fame Showcase in Boston on Saturday. Gonzaga raced to a 29-12 lead over SJU by hitting 11-of-18 shots to open the game, but lead just 35-30 at the half. Gonzaga came from a 55-49 deficit with 3:37 to play and SJU tied the game with two free throws with :10 left to force overtime. Saturday, UConn made 7 of its first 11 3-point attempts to build an early 10-point lead. Gonzaga led 45-42 at halftime on David Pendergraft's trey at the buzzer. Matt Bouldin scored 17 of his 19 points in the second half and Jeremy Pargo scored 12 of his 23 points in the second stanza to carry the Bulldogs to the victory. Bouldin went 5-for-07 from the field and Pargo 4-for-6 in the final 20 minutes. Gonzaga never led by more than four points in the second half until Pargo's two free throws made it 81-76. Pargo's 23 points equaled his career high set last year at Stanford.

Junior Josh Heytvelt and freshman Steven Gray have had their seasons interrupted by surgery. Heytvelt, who has been fighting a stress fracture in his right ankle all fall, underwent surgery Nov. 12 to insert screws into the ankle. Gray, who suffered a fractured wrist Nov. 7 in an exhibition game against Emporia State University, underwent surgery Nov. 14 to insert a pin in the wrist. In both cases, the surgery is expected to speed up the healing process rather than just casting both Heytvelt's ankle and Gray's wrist.

Senior Jeremy Pargo has been named the West Coast Conference Player of the Week for his role in Gonzaga University's road wins at Saint Joseph's University and against the University of Connecticut in the TD Banknorth Garden at the Hall of Fame Showcase in Boston. The native of Chicago, Ill., averaged 15.0 ppg, 5.5 rpg and 4.0 assists. The Gonzaga co-captain went 10-for-22 for 45.5 percent from the field, including 4-for-8 from 3-point range. He scored eight of his career-high equaling 23 points in the final 4:17 Saturday against UConn to key win, and didn't commit any turnovers while playing all 40 minutes against the Huskies. He went 7-for-13 from the field against the Huskies, 4-for-7 from 3-point range and was named the game's MVP. Earlier this season Pargo dished out a career high 13 assists in Gonzaga University's consolation final win over Virginia Tech at the Great Alaska Shootout. That surpassed his previous high of 11 at home against the University of San Francisco last season. Pargo became the seventh player in school history to record 13 assists, Derek Raivio the last player to do it Nov. 21, 2004, against the University of Montana. Blake Stepp is the single-game leader with 16.

There might be some magic in that No. 5 jersey freshman Austin Daye is wearing - especially when it comes to the free throw line. Daye is 40-for-45 for 88.9 percent from the stripe this season. Derek Raivio, who wore No. 5 throughout his Gonzaga career, is one of the most prolific free throw shooters in NCAA history. He finished his career hitting 92.7 percent from the line and holds the top three single-season percentage marks in school history. Raivio went 148-for-154 for 96.1 percent to lead the NCAA Division I ranks in percentage a year ago and ranks second all-time on the NCAA single-season list. For his career he went 343-for-370 for 92.7 percent to rank second in the NCAA based on a minimum of 300 free throws made and 2.5 free throws made/game. Raivio set the Gonzaga record of 56 consecutive free throws. Daye had a string of 29 straight free throws snapped when he missed him final attempt against the University of Connecticut.

Gonzaga University has extended its streak of consecutive games with a 3-pointer to 468. The last time the Bulldogs failed to hit a trey was Jan. 27, 1993, going 0-for-5 at home against Portland. UNLV holds the all-time streak of 668 entering this season.

Gonzaga University guard Matt Bouldin has been hot from the field since going 2-for-9 and scoring 6 points against UC Riverside, going 26-for-48 for 54.2 percent over the last five games. He's also 11-for-19 for 57.9 percent from 3-point range in that stretch. The native of Highland Ranch, Colo., has scored in double digits all five games with a season-high 20 against Virginia Tech and is averaging 16.8 ppg during the streak.

Gonzaga University men's basketball coach Mark Few added three players to his charges for the 2008-09 season with the signing of three players to letters-of-intent. Andy Poling, 6-11, 30-pound forward from Westview High in Portland, Ore.; Grant Gibbs, 6-5, 190-pound guard from Linn-Mar High in Marion, Iowa, and Demetri Goodson, 6-0, 175-pound guard from Klein Collins High in Spring, Texas, outside of Houston, made their intentions official to become Bulldogs on the first day of national letter-of-intent signing day. All three had previously made verbal commitments. Poling averaged 13.9 ppg last season to rank fifth in the Metro League in scoring while leading the Wildcats to a 21-8 overall record and 8-2 second-place Metro League finish. He was named honorable mention All-State 6A in Westview's first season in the newly-created State 6A classification. He was also voted first-team All-Metro League for the Wildcats, ranked seventh in the state heading into the State 6A Tournament where they lost their first two games. Poling was rated one of the 20 best centers in the country by one scouring service. Gibbs averaged 15.0 ppg, 5.0 assists and 5.0 rpg as Linn-Mar captured the Iowa State 4A title last spring. He had 10 points, 8 rebounds and 3 assists in the quarterfinal win over Sioux City North; 20 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists and 7 steals in the semifinal victory over Urbandale, and scored 15 points, grabbed 8 rebounds, and had a pair of assists and steals in the title game against Bettendorf to cap a 24-1 season. He finished third in tournament scoring with 45 points and tied for fourth with 21 rebounds in earning All-Tournament honors. Goodson helped lead Klein Collins to the Region 2 title game last season while averaging 16.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg and 7.0 assists/game. He was an All-State 5A selection, the largest classification in Texas. Goodson was rated as high as the 135th best player in the country by one scouting service.

Seniors Jeremy Pargo and Josh Heytvelt have been named to the preseason watch lists for a pair of prestigious All-American men's basketball honors. Pargo, a native of Chicago, Ill., is one of 50 players named to the John R. Wooden Award as selected by the Los Angeles Athletic Club's Wooden Award Committee. Heytvelt, who hails from Clarkston, Wash., was named one of 50 preseason candidates for the Naismith Trophy as selected by the Atlanta Tipoff Club. Pargo becomes the eighth Bulldog selected as a Wooden candidate. Heytvelt is the second Bulldog in three years under consideration for the Naismith.



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