January 28, 2011 in Sports

Zags focus on San Diego game

By The Spokesman-Review
 
Dan Pelle photoBuy this photo

Gonzaga’s Demetri Goodson battles Saint Mary’s Tim Williams under the boards.
(Full-size photo)

After a decade of dominating the West Coast Conference, Gonzaga is stuck in the middle of the current standings.

Saint Mary’s, San Francisco and Santa Clara – all winners over the Bulldogs in the last nine days – are above GU. Pepperdine, Loyola Marymount and San Diego are below Gonzaga.

The Bulldogs (13-8, 3-3 WCC) sit in the middle, tied with Portland. They’ll probably need to win out, a difficult task considering five of their last seven are on the road, and get a ton of help to have any chance of extending their run of conference championships to 11.

That’s the last thing on their minds as the Bulldogs deal with a three-game losing streak, the latest Thursday’s 73-71 loss to Saint Mary’s. Gonzaga entertains struggling San Diego, (4-17, 0-6), coached by ex-Zags assistant Bill Grier, Saturday at 5.

“We have to stay dialed into what the coaches are saying and get better,” senior guard Steven Gray said. “Like Coach (Mark) Few was saying, take it day by day and stop looking at the big picture and look at where we could be, what might happen. We need to take it bit by bit and chip away.”

Few said Gonzaga can’t afford to “sit around and mope. There’s still everything to play for. We have another game coming and it’s a team that’s hungry for a win. All the tapes I’ve watched, they’re competing hard.”

The Toreros rank last in the WCC in scoring offense (61.6 points per game) and field-goal percentage (41.8).

“This is a small thing to a giant, which means you can’t let this little thing (Thursday’s loss) affect everything else,” GU center Rob Sacre said. “We’re going to be more physical than we were (against Saint Mary’s) and play every game like it’s our last.”


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