The picture at the Kennel on Saturday night was a sea of red. United States Senator Maria Cantwell was there, United States Representative George Nethercutt was there. The Spokane mayor and others. The Zags would not disappoint. Right from the opening tip, Gonzaga's fans were up on their feet and they stayed that way until the end. The scene was much similar to that of a high school spirit game, minus the visiting teams spectators.
Dan Dickau was the story of the night leading with 26 points, many magnificent assists, and even a nasty bruise on his lip to show he'd been working around inside with the big guys. The Zags got off to a quick start hitting their first five of seven shots and leading 11-0 in less than four minutes. Gonzaga continued to roll through the first half and accumulated a 15 point lead even after being out of control mid-half and turning the ball over more than a couple of times. The Bulldogs didn't work the inside as much as usual, but were able to hit perimeter shots and out-rebounded the Waves by 12 at the half.
The second half of basketball wasn't pretty and may have been one of the most physical these teams have seen all year. Pepperdine refused to go away quietly and came fighting back and chipped away at the deficit. The Bulldogs didn't let them take over though, and continued to keep control of the game. While Dickau worked the outside, Cory Violette showed what he was made of and really got things done inside. Alex Hernandez also had a great game and grabbed many pure hustle rebounds and forced some key turnovers to keep the Zags in the drivers seat.
Pepperdine trimmed the lead down to seven (thanks in part to some complimentary scorekeeping) around the two-minute mark when Gonzaga couldn't hit a shot and had some trouble delivering the final knock-out blow. After relaxing and running the shot clock down, Dickau was finally able to knock down a three and seal the deal. The Bulldogs improved their record to 24-3 on the year, grabbed a share of first-place in the WCC, and won their 26th straight in the Kennel.
[Editor's note: Dan Dickau's driving layup for two points in the 2nd-half (causing PU to call timeout) was inexplicably taken away from Gonzaga's point total while two points were added to Pepperdine's Turner's total, even though Turner did not even play in the 2nd-half. A 4 point swing. The official score: 91-78. The true score: 93-76.]