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(25) Gonzaga (23-4) at BYU (18-10)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Thursday, February 20, 11 p.m. (ET)

FACTS & STATS: Site: Marriott Center (20,951) -- Provo, Utah. Television: ESPN2. Home Record: Gonzaga 15-0, BYU 12-1. Away Record: Gonzaga 5-2, BYU 4-8. Neutral Record: Gonzaga 3-2, BYU 2-1. Conference Record: Gonzaga 13-1, BYU 10-5. Series Record: Gonzaga leads, 5-2.

GAME NOTES: The 25th-ranked Gonzaga Bulldogs can clinch the West Coast Conference regular-season title, as they take on the BYU Cougars in a league matchup at the Marriott Center on Thursday evening.

Mark Few's Bulldogs have won two straight and nine of their last 10 games to force their way back into the Top 25. Gonzaga's lone loss over that stretch came out of conference in a showdown with Memphis on the road (60-54). Most recently, the Bulldogs made light work of Loyola Marymount last weekend in Spokane to move to 23-4 overall and 13-1 in-conference.

Dave Rose's Cougars are in second place in the conference standings, but it is a distant second at 10-5. BYU has won five of its last six games to improve to 18-10 overall, including last weekend's 60-57 road win at Saint Mary's.

Being up four games in the league with four to play, Gonzaga can claim the WCC regular-season crown outright with a win here. The Bulldogs are 5-2 all-time against BYU and that includes an 84-69 win on Jan. 25 in Spokane.

Sam Dower dominated play down low, recording a double-double with game-highs of 25 points and 15 rebounds in Gonzaga's 19-point win over Loyola Marymount, which clinched no worse than a tie for the WCC crown. The Bulldogs also received sizable contributions from Kevin Pangos (17 pts), Gary Bell Jr. (14 pts) and Przemek Karnowski (11 pts) in the victory. Gonzaga held a huge edge in rebounding over the Lions (40-25) and was an efficient 20-of-25 from the free-throw line in the game.

A potent offensive team, Gonzaga comes into this contest averaging 78.4 ppg and is ranked fourth in the county in field-goal percentage at a cool .500, including .404 from behind the arc. Pangos leads a quartet of double-figure scorers at 15.2 ppg, fueled by his 71-of-170 showing from behind the arc. Dower ranks second on the team in both scoring (14.8 ppg) and rebounding (6.8 rpg). He is joined in the frontcourt by Karnowski (10.2 ppg, 7.3 rpg), while Bell (11.5 ppg) provides depth along the perimeter.

BYU would have no problem turning this game into a shootout, as the team is more that capable of winning that way. The Cougars rank third in the nation in scoring at a hefty 85.5 ppg, doing so on a healthy .469 shooting. It helps to get over a quarter of that scoring from one player. Junior guard Tyler Haws has been unstoppable this season and has played at an All-American level, leading the conference and ranking fourth in the nation in scoring at an eye- popping 24.1 ppg. The team has a pair of capable facilitators behind Haws in guards Kyle Collinsworth (14.1 ppg, 7.9 rpg, 4.8 apg) and Matt Carlino (13.5 ppg, 4.6 apg). Freshman forward Eric Mika (12.3 ppg, 6.4 rpg) provides balance up front.

The Cougars trailed by 14 points against Saint Mary's but rallied in the second half to earn the three-point win. Haws led all scorers in the victory with 18 points. Collinsworth added 14 point to the cause for BYU, which shot 50 percent from the floor in the game, despite an ugly 1-of-8 from behind the arc.

Defense has not been a strength of the Cougars this season and despite having a big homecourt advantage, stopping Gonzaga from winning yet another conference crown probably isn't in the cards.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Gonzaga 79, BYU 73

02/20 10:41:29 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
PHI 91
CHA 109
Final
PHI 91
CHA 109
Final
ORL 94
UTA 101
Final
CLE 95
BRK 91
Final
BOS 114
MIN 98
Final
DET 100
TOR 110
Final
MIA 103
WAS 105
Final
MEM 97
CHI 103
Final
SAN 119
POR 129
 
4th
DEN 95
LAC 93
 
2nd
LAL 38
OKC 34
 
Final
YOUNG 92
WILB 71
 
Final
TULA 56
JST 49
 
Final
RAD 76
SIENA 66
 
Final
BUCK 88
CASEWEST 65
 
Final
LIB 94
CPNC 65
 
Final
SCAR 68
CLEM 45
Final
CMICH 97
CONC 60
 
Final
MIAMI 44
EKENT 72
Final
GWEBB 91
HIWASSEE 71
 
Final
ODU 60
MDES 43
 
Final
BUF 88
NIAG 62
 
Final
KSU 71
NCAT 57
 
Final
FAM 65
UNF 83
 
Final
NORST 81
NARZ 62
 
Final
DART 58
NILL 55
 
Final
MORE 60
NKENTUCKY 83
 
Final
UCSB 69
SDCHR 46
 
Final
STJ 53
GAELS 47
Final
ALA 69
STILL 49
 
Final
HAMP 66
TENST 54
 
Final
TENN 61
TENT 58
Final
WMARY 86
WSHMD 46
 
Final
MERC 67
COOK 46
 
Final
FLGC 83
FUR 78
 
Final
CALST 49
SDKST 53
 
Final
MTST 68
CHAT 58
Final
NDAK 78
DICKINSON 48
 
Final
LAMON 76
LSUALEX 71
 
Final
PRIN 77
LIP 55
 
Final
LAM 80
MLGN 53
 
Final
MINN 92
SEAT 57
 
Final
LOYC 73
SUTAH 57
 
Final
SELA 81
WINT 71
 
Final
SILL 52
NO 56
 
Final
MARQ 83
ALAAM 49
 
Final
TTU 72
ARKPB 51
 
Final
DEN 84
COLST 85
 
Final
CREI 75
TXPA 60
 
2nd
CAL 44
EWASH 40
 
2nd
UTST 42
IDST 34
 
1st
UTEP 2
ARZ 15
 
11:59pm Tonight
CHAM
HAW
 
Final
NJD 3
TAM 2
Final
OTT 6
ANA 2
Final
DET 1
NYI 2
Final
WIN 2
BOS 1
3rd
CAL 1
DAL 2