College Basketball

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Bryant (0-0) at (15) Gonzaga (0-0)



Saturday, November 9, 7 p.m. (et)

The Sports Network

By Lucas Gulotta, Associate College Basketball Editor

FACTS & STATS: Site: McCarthey Athletic Center (6,000) -- Spokane, Washington. Television: KHQ, Root Sports. Home Record: Bryant 0-0, Gonzaga 0-0. Away Record: Bryant 0-0, Gonzaga 0-0. Neutral Record: Bryant 0-0, Gonzaga 0-0. Conference Record: Bryant 0-0, Gonzaga 0-0. Series Record: First meeting.

GAME NOTES: The Bryant Bulldogs will try to produce one of the early season upsets as they tip-off their 2013-14 schedule at the McCarthey Athletic Center against the 15th-ranked Gonzaga Bulldogs.

Bryant had one of the biggest turnarounds in NCAA history a season ago, earning 17 more victories than the 2011-12 campaign to finish 19-12 overall. The Bulldogs were tied for second in the preseason rankings in the Northeast Conference, but will have to find a way to replace Frankie Dobbs, who was one of the biggest keys to the team's success. Coach Tim O'Shea was able to guide the team to a 56-54 victory at Boston College in late November last season, however the team suffered lopsided losses at Indiana (97-54) and Providence (81-49) to begin the slate.

Coach Mark Few's Bulldogs are coming off a 32-3 season that ended with a surprising third-round loss to Wichita State in the NCAA Tournament. Gonzaga was able to earn a No. 1 seed in the Big Dance due to its dominance over the course of the regular season and West Coast Conference Tournament, but it will be difficult to repeat those incredible results without center Kelly Olnyk, who is now a key component of the rebuilding Boston Celtics in the NBA. Few will also be without Elias Harris, who was one of the top forwards in the WCC for the majority of his career.

This will be the first meeting in history between Bryant and Gonzaga.

Bryant will need huge performances out of its leaders, Alex Francis and Dyami Starks, both of whom have shown the ability to be stars not only in the NEC, but on the national stage as well. Francis averaged 17.4 points and 8.6 rebounds per game last year, and he hit on an efficient 56.9 percent from the field, while Starks led the conference in 3-pointers (95, 3.06 per game), all while netting 17.7 ppg. Others expected to lend support are Corey Maynard (9.3 ppg, 5.2 rpg) and Joe O'Shea (8.3 ppg), and there are some talented youngsters who could make a name for themselves as well, notably sophomore Shane McLaughlin (1.0 ppg, 1.3 apg).

Gonzaga will be led by point guard Kevin Pangos, who netted 11.9 points and 3.3 assists per game with Olynk and Harris commanding attention in the paint. He will be joined in the backcourt by Gary Bell, Jr. (9.0 ppg) and David Stockton (3.7 ppg, 3.4 apg), who is the son of NBA Hall-of-Famer and Bulldog alum John Stockton. Providence transfer Gerard Coleman should help as he was a double-digit scorer for the Friars in the highly competitive Big East Conference. Few's team will need senior forward Sam Dower, Jr. (6.9 ppg, 2.7 rpg) and sophomore seven-footer Przemek Karnowski to adjust to their starting roles quickly to maintain its status as a national title contender.

Bryant's favor of a fast-paced game will not be beneficial against this loaded Zags squad, as better teams usually benefit from games that feature a high possession count for both sides. Pangos is one of the top shooters in the nation and has single-handedly buried the opposition from beyond the arc on multiple occasions. Since Bryant is not deep enough to focus on Pangos, he should have no problem starting off his season on a strong note.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Gonzaga 82, Bryant 61

11/09 10:30:44 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
CHR 2
DUR 9
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
CHI
 
7:05pm Tonight
DUR
NOR
 
7:05pm Tuesday
PHI 0
ATL 0
7:05pm Tuesday
NYY 0
CHC 0
7:05pm Tuesday
BAL 0
TAM 0
7:08pm Tuesday
DET 0
CLE 0
Final
CIN 7
PIT 5
Final
MIA 11
WAS 2
Final
TEX 5
SEA 0
Final
CWS 2
BOS 1
Final
HOU 2
KAN 4
Final
MIL 1
STL 6
Final
MIN 3
TOR 9
Final
ARI 0
NYM 9
Final
ANA 9
OAK 10
Final
SDP 2
COL 3
Final
SFG 3
LOS 2
12:35pm Today
CIN
PIT
12:35pm Today
BAL
TAM
 
1:05pm Today
NYY
CHC
 
1:10pm Today
MIL
STL
 
3:40pm Today
ARI
NYM
 
7:05pm Tonight
PHI
ATL
 
7:05pm Tonight
NYY
CHC
 
7:08pm Tonight
DET
CLE
 
7:10pm Tonight
MIA
WAS
 
8:05pm Tonight
TEX
SEA
 
8:10pm Tonight
CWS
BOS
 
8:10pm Tonight
HOU
KAN
 
8:10pm Tonight
MIN
TOR
 
10:05pm Tonight
ANA
OAK
 
10:10pm Tonight
SDP
COL
 
10:15pm Tonight
SFG
LOS
 
Final
BRK 98
NYK 109
Final
LAC 117
DEN 105
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
CHI
 
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
IND
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIL
ATL
 
8:00pm Tonight
CLE
BRK
 
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
DAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
OKC
DET
 
8:00pm Tonight
NOP
HOU
 
8:00pm Tonight
SAN
LAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIA
PHI
 
8:00pm Tonight
NYK
TOR
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
UTA
 
8:00pm Tonight
BOS
WAS
 
10:30pm Tonight
DEN
GSW
 
10:30pm Tonight
POR
LAC
 
10:30pm Tonight
SAC
PHO
 
7:00pm Tonight
TAM
MON
7:30pm Tonight
PIT
CLB
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
DAL
Final
CHR 2
DUR 9
 
7:05pm Tonight
DUR
NOR