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Recap and highlights: Eighth-ranked Gonzaga flexes its muscle inside, routs Denver 101-40

UPDATED: Fri., Dec. 21, 2018, 8:21 p.m.

Brandon Clarke and Rui Hachimura netted 23 points each and No. 8 Gonzaga routed Denver 101-40 on Friday at the McCarthey Athletic Center in Spokane.

Clarke added a team-high seven rebounds and three blocks, which Hachimura finished a perfect 9 for 9 from the floor.

Gonzaga (11-2) shot 68.4 percent overall, but was 22 of 26 from the floor in the first half.

Corey Kispert (13 points), Zach Norvell Jr. (12) and Filip Pertusev (10) also scored in double figures for the Bulldogs.

GU shot 43.5 percent from 3-point range and 81.3 percent from the free-throw line, while Denver (5-9) shot 24.6 percent overall and 11.1 percent from deep.

Tory Stewart-Miller paced the Pioneers with 10 points and nine rebounds.

Gonzaga dominated Denver on the glass (42-29) and on points in the paint (56-20).

The Zags remain at home as North Alabama will visit The Kennel next Friday (6 p.m., KHQ).

♦  ♦  ♦

Second half

Final – Gonzaga 101, Denver 40: This one was more or less over from the tip as the Bulldogs dominated Denver in nearly every facet of the game.

Brandon Clarke and Rui Hachimura shine again on both sides of the court of the Bulldogs, which will remain at home to face North Alabama next Friday.

2:41 – Gonzaga 97, Denver 40: Last starter left on the floor for the Zags is Zach Norvell Jr., as coach Mark Few will let his reserves finish this one out.

Couple of quick baskets for Filip Petrusev out of the media break gets him to 10 points. Without Killian Tillie, Petrusev has had a chance to get a lot of important minutes this season as the first big man off the bench.

First minutes of the night also for Jack Beach, who gives Norvell the rest of the night off.

It also appears that Tillie’s foot is feeling better as he leaps off the bench to celebrate a Joel Ayayi 3-pointer right in front of the GU bench, which was quickly followed by a similar celebration for a Beach triple.

7:52 – Gonzaga 81, Denver 36: Filip Petrusev the first GU bench player to score, but he’s also picked up three fouls. Jeremy Jones has contributed away from the bucket with four assists and four rebounds to go with his three points.

Brandon Clarke having a great second half as he’s up to 23 points on 10 of 12 shooting. He’s also blocked three Denver shots.

11:55 – Gonzaga 70, Denver 30: Zags coming back down to earth a bit on offense, shooting 46.2 percent from the floor this half.

Zach Norvell Jr. becomes the fourth GU player into double figures with 12 points. Rui Hachimura has yet to score this after after pouring in 23 points in the opening 20 minutes.

Brandon Clarke joins the 20-point club with a nice put-back after a missed Corey Kispert layup. Clarke also has a team-best seven boards and has made 9 of 11 shots from the field.

Bulldogs have done a great job on former Creighton guard Ronnie Harrell Jr., who has just four points on 2 of 11 shooting.

15:15 – Gonzaga 63, Denver 28: Bulldogs open the second half in a zone look on defense, something they’ve switched into a few times tonight.

On offense, it’s a lot more of the same we saw in the first half from the Bulldogs – scoring.

Brandon Clarke opens the half with a strong and-one, followed by a nice move and bucket from Josh Perkins off an in-bounds pass.

Clarke now has 16 points for the Bulldogs, while Corey Kispert gets into double figures for the Zags with 10 points.

After missing their first six shots out of the break, the Pioneers find a little grove and go on a 7-0 run. GU answers though with a Kispert layup on Zach Norvell Jr.’s fourth assist of the game

First half

Halftime – Gonzaga 56, Denver 19: Rui Hachimura leads Denver on his own through the first 20 minutes. Add in Brandon Clarke and the rest of the Bulldogs and it equals a rout for GU.

Hachimura up to 23 points on 9 of 9 shooting.

Bulldogs shoot 84.6 percent overall (a first-half record) and 75 percent from deep, while Denver shoots 21.4 percent from the floor and 11.1 percent from 3-point range. GU winning the battle on the boards 17-11 and is outscoring Denver 30-6 in the paint. GU with eight turnovers and 13 assists.

Clarke with 13 first-half points, while Zach Norvell Jr. has nine.

3:55 – Gonzaga 47, Denver 17: Reserves starting to get some court time for the Zags, as Greg Foster Jr. spells Zach Norvell Jr. Joel Ayayi has also seen early minutes for GU.

Bulldogs moving the ball very well against this DU defense, getting easy looks – hence the 90 percent shooting from the floor.

Zags might look to get more scoring out of its bench before the half, as only four players have scored for GU (Hachimura, Clarke, Norvell and Kispert).

7:28 – Gonzaga 38, Denver 11: Second foul called in just four minutes on Filip Petrusev. Zags up to five fouls and six turnovers, the only negatives that can be said about the game so far from a GU standpoint.

Bulldogs also miss their first shot of the game on a Josh Perkins 3-pointer. Again, positives outweigh the negatives.

Rui Hachimura up to 16 points for the Zags, while Brandon Clarke has joined him in double figures with 10 points. GU up to 24 points in the paint and is outrebounding the Pioneers 14-6.

Tory Stewart-Miller leads Denver with four points.

11:21 – Gonzaga 26, Denver 2: Absolute dominance by the Zags to start this one. GU opens on a 18-0 run before Denver’s first bucket comes at the 13:42 mark in the half.

Bulldogs going inside early and often, shown by their 16 points in the paint.

Second personal foul called in the opening eight minutes on GU point guard Josh Perkins, who heads to the bench in favor of wing Jeremy Jones. This is working out to be a good game for resting the starters anyways.

Zags also having some fun in the rout as freshman forward Filip Petrusev finds Brandon Clarke one an alley-oop. Clarke has eight points, while Rui Hachimura has nine and Zach Norvell Jr. has six for GU.

Gonzaga has still not missed a shot, starting the contest 11 of 11 from the floor.

15:26 – Gonzaga 14, Denver 0: Another game where Gonzaga’s size and skill inside is a step above from the start. First three GU buckets go to Rui Hachimura and Brandon Clarke. The duo also giving Denver nothing inside on the Pioneers’ offensive end.

After a quiet start against UT Arlington, Zach Norvell Jr. gets into the action early for the Zags with a nifty drive to the bucket while getting fouled.

Great start for the GU defense, which has held the Pioneers to 0 of 8 from the floor. Zags meanwhile are a perfect 6 for 6 shooting.

Hachimura with seven points for the Bulldogs, while Clarke has four.

♦  ♦  ♦

Gonzaga announces Starting 5

♦  ♦  ♦

Rui Hachimura, Brandon Clarke on Robertson watch list

Game preview

Gonzaga roster

No.

Name

Pos.

Ht.

Class

11

Joel Ayayi

G

6-5

Fr

2

Jack Beach

G

6-3

So

15

Brandon Clarke

G

6-8

Jr

0

Geno Crandall

G

6-3

Sr

4

Greg Foster Jr.

G

6-5

Fr

21

Rui Hachimura

F

6-8

Jr

22

Jeremy Jones

F

6-7

Sr

24

Corey Kispert

F

6-6

So

10

Matthew Lang

G

6-3

Fr

5

Alex Martin

G

6-5

Jr

23

Zach Norvell Jr.

G

6-5

So

20

Paul Pennington

G

5-10

Fr

13

Josh Perkins

G

6-3

Sr

3

Filip Petrusev

F

6-11

Fr

33

Killian Tillie

F

6-10

Jr

LEADERS

Player

G

MPG

FG%

FT%

3P%

RPG

APG

SPG

BPG

PPG

Rui Hachimura

12

30.7

.558

.723

.412

1.3

6.8

1.8

0.9

0.6

Zach Norvell Jr.

12

31.1

.433

.833

.356

1.0

5.0

3.3

1.5

0.0

Brandon Clarke

12

27.0

.695

.636

.667

3.4

8.2

1.5

1.5

3.3

Josh Perkins

12

32.8

.455

.913

.420

0.6

3.4

8.0

1.5

0.1

Corey Kispert

12

29.1

.447

1.000

.407

1.3

4.3

1.5

0.5

0.3

Filip Petrusev

12

14.8

.541

.821

.300

1.0

3.6

0.3

0.2

0.8

Geno Crandall

6

18.2

.300

.688

.083

0.0

1.5

2.3

1.3

0.2

Jeremy Jones

12

15.1

.813

.714

.800

0.8

4.3

1.0

0.2

0.0

Joel Ayayi

6

6.7

.615

.000

.000

0.3

1.5

0.3

0.2

0.0

Greg Foster Jr.

11

5.6

.444

.500

.400

0.1

0.5

0.5

0.2

0.1

Jack Beach

5

3.0

1.000

-

1.000

0.2

0.4

0.0

0.0

0.0

Matthew Lang

2

4.0

.000

-

.000

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

Alex Martin

1

1.0

-

-

-

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

Denver roster

No.

Name

Pos.

Ht.

Class

32

Abiola Akintola

F

6-6

220

30

Donoven Carlisle

F

6-8

210

4

Taelyr Gatlin

G

6-3

180

25

Ronnie Harrell Jr.

G/F

6-7

200

20

Drew Joiner

G

6-3

175

11

Jake Krafka

F

6-7

225

12

Alperen Kurnaz

F

6-8

220

10

Joseph Lanzi

G

6-5

195

0

Ade Murkey

G

6-5

200

1

David Nzekwesi

F

6-9

240

5

Elvin Rodriguez

G

6-1

180

2

Joe Rosga

G

6-3

185

14

Tory Stewart-Miller

F

6-9

245

3

Jase Townsend

G

6-3

175

32

Abiola Akintola

F

6-6

220

30

Donoven Carlisle

F

6-8

210

LEADERS

Player

G

MPG

FG%

FT%

3P%

RPG

APG

SPG

BPG

PPG

Ronnie Harrell Jr.

13

28.9

.414

.810

.419

0.8

5.2

2.2

0.7

0.4

Joe Rosga

9

31.2

.390

.833

.431

0.6

3.3

2.8

1.6

0.0

Ade Murkey

13

23.8

.505

.775

.476

1.3

4.0

2.3

0.8

0.3

Tory Stewart-Miller

6

19.5

.583

.818

.750

0.8

4.2

0.3

0.3

0.7

David Nzekwesi

11

9.5

.618

.857

.600

0.5

1.9

0.1

0.3

0.3

Jase Townsend

9

16.6

.333

.833

.269

0.3

1.6

0.8

0.6

0.0

Donoven Carlisle

13

21.2

.532

.462

.467

1.2

5.3

1.0

0.5

0.7

Jake Krafka

3

29.3

.357

-

.429

0.7

3.3

0.7

0.3

0.7

Taelyr Gatlin

13

16.8

.475

.500

.474

0.1

1.2

1.8

0.3

0.1

Elvin Rodriguez

13

11.1

.463

.563

.188

0.3

1.5

0.9

0.3

0.0

Abiola Akintola

13

18.5

.475

.313

-

1.6

4.2

0.5

0.3

0.5

Joseph Lanzi

13

14.9

.364

1.000

.231

0.5

1.5

0.8

0.5

0.3

Alperen Kurnaz

13

9.4

.379

.714

.545

0.6

2.2

0.3

0.2

0.1

Drew Joiner

3

2.7

.333

-

.000

0.7

1.0

0.3

0.3

0.3

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