Gonzaga's #7 ranked team walked into a soldout, hostile McKeon Pavilion on the campus of St. Mary's and took care of business Saturday night. The Zags efficiently built a 15-point halftime lead, then withstood official Dave Libbey and a spirited Gaels rally (to within three points) before bolting away to a 20-point lead and settling for a 79-60 victory.
Blake Stepp was masterful at running the team and scored 16, and big Cory Violette recorded a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds. Junior Ronny Turiaf scored 11 but was quieted for much of the contest.
Paul Morigney of St. Mary's drives in amongst Gonzaga's bigs Cory Violette and Sean Mallon. As is obvious, it was a tough, physical game throughout.
The story of the night was two freshmen, Adam Morrison and Sean Mallon. Adam arguably had his finest game with a career high 22 points while Mallon equaled his career high of 12 points and was second only to Violette in rebounds, grabbing 7 boards. Both played superbly in other areas of the game, including passing and defense.
The Zags held St. Mary's to a low shooting percentage while topping 52% from the field, near the top of the nation in shooting percentage.
Gonzaga plays three of its next four games in the Kennel, beginning with a February 18, 7:30pm, contest against Portland, the team that beat GU last year in the Kennel.