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Gonzaga Basketball

Gonzaga’s Johnathan Williams surpasses 600 career rebounds, other Zags approach milestones

Gonzaga forward Johnathan Williams (3) grabs a rebound during the second half of the Zags’ 96-61 win. (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)
By Michael Gulledge The Spokesman-Review

Johnathan Williams’ focus after Gonzaga’s 96-61 win was not on his 600th career rebound.

In fact, he wasn’t even aware of the career milestone.

“That’s a great accomplishment,” Williams said. “I didn’t know I was at 600 rebounds.”

Williams reached the milestone in the first half when he pulled down his fourth of the 11 rebounds he recorded on Thursday.

Gonzaga coach Mark Few was also complimentary of Williams’ career milestone, and of his performance Thursday night.

“Good for him,” Few said. “11 rebounds is huge. Helps us tremendously when he is that active on the glass like that.”

Williams will be the first of a couple other Gonzaga players to reach career milestones in the final weeks of the season.

Senior center Przemek Karnowski became Gonzaga’s all-time career leader in victories after the Zags win at BYU two weeks ago. He passed Kyle Dranginis and Kevin Pangos, who both earned 122 career wins with the Zags.

Karnowski has posted a 127-13 record in his career at Gonzaga. Dranginis was 122-21 and Pangos lost one less game than Dranginis to finish with an all-time record of 122-20.

“I’m happy that the statistics show that when I play we win the games for sure,” Karnowski said. “I embrace it, that’s what the program is all about. It’s about winning.”

Following the Zags’ win Thursday, Karnowski is now six wins away from matching Shane Battier’s NCAA Division I all-time record of 133 career wins.

If Gonzaga finishes the regular season unbeaten and wins the West Coast Conference tournament, it must at least advance to the second round of the NCAA Tournament for Karnowski to become NCAA D-I’s all-time career leader in wins.

“I’m not thinking about it,” Karnowski said. “We got to take it one game at a time like we have been the whole season. Just keep winning and just keep pushing.”

Karnowski leads active D-I players with 140 games played.

Nigel Williams-Goss is also close to achieving a few milestones. The redshirt junior needs 10 more assists to earn 450 for his career, and he is four steals from breaking into the top 10 for most steals in a single season in Gonzaga history.

Senior Jordan Mathews is 24 points from eclipsing the 1,500 mark for his career.