Silas Melson scored a career-high 23 points, including seven 3-pointers, as No. 15 Gonzaga had no trouble against a young Portland team during a comprehensive 103-57 victory Thursday night at the McCarthey Athletic Center.
Melson, a senior guard from Portland, finished 7 of 12 from 3-point range, while also grabbing three rebounds, dishing out three assists and grabbing a pair of steals.
Forward Rui Hachimura added 20 points and a team-best seven rebounds off the bench for the Bulldogs (15-3, 5-0 WCC), while Killian Tillie and Josh Perkins also finished in double figures with 15 and 13 points respectively.
Gonzaga shot 52.6 percent from the floor – the fourth straight game the Zags have shot better than 50 percent. The Bulldogs also hit 37 percent from deep.
Along with shooting well, Gonzaga took care of the ball. The Bulldogs turned the ball over only six times compared to Portland’s 12 turnovers.
Marcus Shaver Jr. led the Pilots (6-12, 0-5) with 16 points off the bench.
Gonzaga will next travel to San Francisco for a 6:30 p.m. Saturday contest against the Dons.
Final – Gonzaga 103, Portland 57: Former manager Brian Pete hits the first bucket of his career, sending the Gonzaga bench into a frenzy. This one was done a while ago, Zags just enjoying a comprehensive win.
3:26 – Gonzaga 92, Portland 51: Subs are in.
Perkins into double figures with 13 points. This one might swell to a 50-point win if Portland isn’t careful.
6:48 – Gonzaga 86, Portland 49: Maybe the most limited bench game so far this season for the Bulldogs as coach Mark Few has only played eight players.
Another make from Melson gives him 23 points – which is a career high. Zags have also hit 13 treys against the Portland zone.
Summary of tonight’s updates: Gonzaga scoring a lot. Hachimura up to 20 for the Bulldogs, Tillie to 15. Perkins and Kispert at nine and eight respectively.
11:24 – Gonzaga 71, Portland 46: Johnathan Williams back on the bench, but the senior forward is questionable to return. Reported that he bumped knees with a Portland player.
On the court, its still all Gonzaga as the lead has swelled to near the betting line.
Gonzaga also shooting at a 51 percent clip. Zags are looking to hit that clip for the fourth game in a row. Bulldogs also shooting 43 percent from deep, seven makes coming from Melson, who has 21 points.
Franklin Porter the first Portland player into double figures with 11 points, while the Zags still have the three at that mark.
15:35 – Gonzaga 61, Portland 39: Hachimura starts in place of the injured Williams as the second half opens up.
Rui and Tillie both still going strong as Tillie hits double figures (11 points) and Hachimura is up to 14.
A three quick treys from Melson puts the junior up to a team-high 18 points as the rout is on in The Kennel.
Halftime – Gonzaga 45, Portland 29: Bulldogs were favored by 30 coming into this one and are right that pace through 20 minutes.
Hachimura leads the Zags in scoring with 12 points, while Tillie is at nine. Both also with a team-best four rebounds.
Gonzaga shooting 46.2 percent from the field and 33 percent from deep, while Portland is making 33 percent overall and 40 percent from 3-point range.
Zags have turned the ball over just four times, while forcing six Pilots’ giveaways. Rebounding advantage also favoring Gonzaga (26-17).
Scary moment for Gonzaga though, as forward Johnathan Williams was taken to the locker room to have his right knee looked at after a collision.
Shaver Jr. leads Portland with nine points, while leading scorer Josh McSwiggan has been limited to five points.
3:32 – Gonzaga 38, Portland 23: Hachimura the first into the double figures for the Bulldogs at 10 points. He’s 4 for 5 from the floor off the bench.
Zags have done a great job taking care of the ball with only two turnovers. They also have eight assists on their 15 makes.
Bulldogs have started to crash the boards as well and lead the Pilots 22-13 in rebounding.
Marcus Shaver Jr. leads Portland in scoring with seven points off the bench.
6:32 – Gonzaga 29, Portland 19: Portland keeping pace with the Bulldogs in one department – rebounds. First time in WCC play a team has given the Bulldogs a little trouble on the boards. Zags lead 16-12.
Gonzaga rattles off another six straight points off 3-pointers from Josh Perkins and Corey Kispert to force a Portland timeout. Gonzaga shooting 41.7 percent from deep and 48 overall.
Perkins and Tillie both up to six points for the Zags, while no Portland player has more than three.
10:56 – Gonzaga 18, Portland 10: Portland sticking with its zone defense – it’s not working out well for them.
Gonzaga really working the ball around both inside and out, getting whatever shot it wants.
Zags use a 8-0 run to get the lead near double digits. Rui Hachimura – who is averaging over 13 points per game in WCC play – has four quick points off the bench for the Bulldogs.
15:38 – Gonzaga 10, Portland 6: Gonzaga really relying on the 3-point shot, taking five of its first six shots from behind the arc.
Bulldogs doing well scrambling for loose balls, but haven’t taken advantage in the lane offensively.
Outside of an early Portland 3-pointer, the Zags have done a nice job of shutting down the Pilots on offense.
Killian Tillie leads the Zags with four points. Zags also have a pair of blocks.
Gonzaga announces starting five
McSwiggan, Hartwich provide one-two punch for Pilots
Sophomore Josh McSwiggan has been Portland’s most reliable scorer. The 6-foot-7 wing from England averages 13.4 points. He leads the team in made 3-pointers (44) and 3-point percentage (47.8) among rotation regulars. … READ MORE »
No. 15 Bulldogs vs. Pilots
At McCarthey Athletic Center, Spokane
➤ Thursday, Jan. 11: Portland Pilots at Gonzaga Bulldogs, 6 p.m. PT TV: KHQ/ROOT Sports
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