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Portland entertains No. 22 Gonzaga

Portland, OR (SportsNetwork.com) - The 22nd-ranked Gonzaga Bulldogs hope to keep their perfect record in West Coast Conference play intact, as they hit the road to challenge the Pilots from the University of Portland on Thursday night.

Gonzaga brings a 14-2 overall record into this matchup, and the team has won each of its first four WCC bouts by double digits, all of which took place in Spokane. The Pacific Tigers were the Zags' latest victims, as they were steam rolled in what turned out to be an 86-64 final. Gonzaga, which is playing only its second true road game of the campaign this evening, has not lost to a WCC foe at home since 2011, and the team is an eye-popping 67-2 in WCC home games since the McCarthey Athletic Center opened back in 2004.

Portland is at the other end of the success spectrum in terms of its performance thus far against its West Coast Conference rivals, losing three of its first four battles, including a 72-63 decision to visiting Saint Mary's-CA last Saturday. The setback was the team's fifth in 11 home games this season, and the Pilots have lost four of their last five in Portland.

Gonzaga owns a 91-65 lead in the long-standing rivalry with Portland, and the Bulldogs have really dominated the Pilots under current head coach Mark Few, going 27-1 during his tenure. Current Pilots' head man Eric Reveno is 0-14 against the Zags.

Gonzaga put forth a complete effort in its recent rout of Pacific, as the Zags shot a blistering 69.2 percent from the field, which included a lights-out 10- of-13 effort (.769) from 3-point range. Meanwhile, the Tigers showed very little teeth in connecting on only 31.7 percent of their total shots. Drew Barham and Kevin Pangos paced the Bulldogs with 16 points apiece, while David Stockton tallied 15 and Sam Dower came off the bench to contribute 13.

The Bulldogs are one of the more potent offensive teams in the nation, averaging 82.9 ppg in hitting 52.0 of their field goal attempts (No. 3 in the country), which includes a national-best 44.3 percent effort from beyond the arc. The team is no slouch on defense either, yielding 66.6 ppg with foes shooting just 39.1 percent from the floor overall, and 31.3 percent from long range. Pangos is averaging a club-best 17.4 ppg, while combining with Stockton to hand out 8.9 apg. Dower (12.7 ppg, 6.4 rpg), Gary Bell, Jr. (12.7 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 2.0 apg) and Przemek Karnowski (10.2 ppg, 8.1 rpg, 2.0 bpg), the former two having missed some time recently due to injury, round out the unit's double-digit scorers while excelling in other areas as well.

Poor shooting was the primary culprit in Portland's recent loss to Saint Mary's, as the squad converted only 38 percent of its field goal attempts in falling for the third time in four league bouts. Ryan Nicholas scored 12 points to lead the way, with moderate assistance coming from Alec Wintering (11 points), Kevin Bailey (10 points) and Bobby Sharp (10 points). As for the Gaels, they knocked down 45.7 percent of their total shots, while winning the battle on the boards (35-28) and outscoring the Pilots in the paint (32-20). Portland did manage an exceptional 22-of-26 effort at the charity stripe.

Production at the offensive end hasn't been Portland's problem this season, as the team is putting up 78.3 ppg in draining 45.6 percent of its field goal tries, which includes a 35.4 percent showing from 3-point land. The effort at the defensive end however, yields 72.0 ppg, with the opposition using the long-range shot to maximum effectiveness by nailing nearly seven treys per game at a 39.2 percent clip. Bailey leads the club with 17.1 ppg, while Nicholas (13.0 ppg) and Thomas van der Mars (12.9 ppg) join him in double figures. Nicholas is close to averaging a double-double as he also pulls down 9.3 rpg, while van der Mars comes up with 6.9 caroms per contest in helping the Pilots to a +3.2 rebounding margin.

01/09 11:05:32 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
NOR 1
DUR 2
 
1:05pm Today
NOR
DUR
 
3:30pm Today
MIA
CHA
Final
WAS 3
STL 4
Final
CLE 0
TOR 5
Final
DET 5
ANA 2
Final
BOS 4
BAL 2
Final
KAN 5
MIN 4
Final
CHC 8
CIN 4
Final
OAK 4
HOU 3
Final
PIT 7
MIL 8
Final
NYM 5
ATL 7
Final
TAM 16
NYY 1
Final
MIA 7
SEA 0
Final
TEX 6
CWS 3
Final
LOS 8
ARI 6
Final
COL 3
PHI 1
Final
SDP 3
SFG 1
1:05pm Today
CLE
TOR
 
1:08pm Today
DET
ANA
 
1:10pm Today
NYM
ATL
 
1:10pm Today
MIA
SEA
 
1:35pm Today
PIT
MIL
 
1:35pm Today
WAS
STL
 
1:40pm Today
TAM
NYY
 
2:10pm Today
KAN
MIN
 
2:20pm Today
CHC
CIN
 
3:05pm Today
TEX
CWS
 
4:05pm Today
OAK
HOU
 
4:10pm Today
LOS
ARI
 
4:10pm Today
COL
PHI
 
4:10pm Today
SDP
SFG
 
7:05pm Tonight
BOS
BAL
 
Final
TOR 87
BRK 94
Final
LAC 105
GSW 109
Final
IND 93
ATL 101
Final
OKC 100
MEM 86
1:00pm Today
SAN
DAL
3:30pm Today
MIA
CHA
7:00pm Tonight
CHI
WAS
9:30pm Tonight
HOU
POR
Final
STL 4
CHI 3
Final
PIT 3
CLB 4
Final
COL 4
MIN 2
12:00pm Today
NYR
PHI
3:00pm Today
BOS
DET
7:00pm Tonight
MON
TAM
10:00pm Tonight
SJS
LOS
Final
NOR 1
DUR 2
 
1:05pm Today
NOR
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