Tomorrow's Four Corners page in the S-R will have a quick look at Portland, a couple of GU notes and a feature on reserve center Will Foster (No. 45). There's also news that Matt Bouldin is a finalist for Lowe's Senior CLASS award. More on that here.
Read on for much more.
First, here's a brief look at Portland, which visits Gonzaga tomorrow night:
RECORD: 17-4, 6-1
COMING UP: Thursday vs.
OUTLOOK: The Pilots (14-7, 5-2) have won four straight, by margins of 40, 16, 16 and 22, since falling to Saint Mary’s 77-72 in
Here's two short items that will run in a notebook tomorrow:
Coaches vs. Cancer
Tonight’s Gonzaga-Portland game is part of Mark and Marcy Few’s continuing Coaches vs. Cancer efforts. Few and his GU assistant coaches will wear white polo shirts that read ‘BELiEVE’; Portland’s coaching staff will wear purple polos with the same ‘BELiEVE’ inscription.
Sarah Michaelson, wife of Bulldogs administrative assistant Brian Michaelson, developed the BELiEVE concept and she’s working with Coaches-vs.-Cancer organizers with the goal of having as many people as possible wear BELiEVE T-shirts at tonight’s game. Sarah’s parents are both fighting cancer.
BELiEVE T-shirts cost $10 and can be purchased at Kimmel, U District Physical Therapy and
Jared Stohl replaced Raivio in the starting lineup and he’s averaging 18.5 points over the last four games. In the Pilots’ win over
And here's my unedited article on senior Will Foster:
Gonzaga’s Will Foster is big and blunt.
Ask the 7-foot-5, 270-pound reserve center a question and his response comes unfiltered. He speaks openly about intense growing pains as a youngster, his three-plus years of minimal playing time and the several times he had his bags packed, ready to transfer to another school.
In one sentence he’ll tell you, “It’s been kind of a plagued four years here.” A few minutes later he’ll insist, “I’m going to look back (at his career) and be content with it.”
Foster has been more of a factor this season than the previous three. He’s played in 17 of 21 games (he was suspended for one game for leaving the court in an inappropriate manner against Pepperdine two weeks ago). He’s logged 102 minutes. He played 97 minutes combined in his first two years and a career-high 163 last season, additional time coming when Rob Sacre was sidelined with foot injury after just six games.
“What I want most out of Will is to be a great team guy and to kind of relish his role, which is to get in there, be a great interior defender, protect the rim and be a good rebounder,” coach Mark Few said. “In a lot of instances he has helped us. It’s a game-to-game, situation-to-situation thing (determining when Foster plays). I’m sure that can sometimes be frustrating but that’s how it is when you’re in that role.”
Foster was 6-feet tall in the sixth grade and 7-feet by his sophomore year at
After dabbling in baseball, basketball and briefly with wrestling, Foster turned out for hoops as a freshman at Enumclaw. He was practically glued to the bench on the C-team. Foster’s mom and step-dad relocated to
Foster played varsity as a junior and averaged 17.5 points and 14 rebounds as a senior.
“I didn’t really think about where I wanted to go and when Gonzaga offered, I accepted it on the spot,” he said. “I called my parents and they weren’t too happy about the choice.”
Foster said the plan was for him to redshirt as a 235-pound freshman, but that changed during the season. He devoured three protein shakes a day and gained 25 pounds during his freshman season, highlighted by a solid, 5-minute contribution against
“I actually knew where I was going, my AAU coach was ready to pounce on it, my parents were all for it, all my friends, I was just ready to go,” he said. “And I looked at it and I didn’t feel like leaving (girl friend) Lauren (
There were other reasons. His best friend from high school attends nearby
Foster understands his court time depends on the other team’s lineup. Smaller, quicker teams aren’t favorable matchups.
As a junior, he had two points, four rebounds and a blocked shot as Gonzaga rallied from a 15-point deficit to knock off
“I think my teammates were a little more surprised (than USF) because they didn’t think I’d pull that out in a game,” said Foster, who drew a foul on the play, but missed both free throws. “They pretty much know my limitations and that’s not in my jurisdiction.”
Foster said he might try to play professionally overseas next season. With his senior season winding down, he was asked if he has regrets about his GU career.
“Good question,” Foster said. “I’m not going to look back and regret it. I had fun, made some friends and definitely made a lot of memories.”