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Key matchup: North Dakota State big Rocky Kreuser capable beyond 3-point arc

UPDATED: Mon., Nov. 26, 2018, 4:16 p.m.

In this Nov. 13, 2017 file photo, North Dakota State forward Rocky Kreuser slam dunks the ball during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Southern California, in Los Angeles. Southern California won 75-65. (Gus Ruelas / Associated Press)
In this Nov. 13, 2017 file photo, North Dakota State forward Rocky Kreuser slam dunks the ball during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Southern California, in Los Angeles. Southern California won 75-65. (Gus Ruelas / Associated Press)

The Zags haven’t run into many stretch big men other than Duke’s Cam Reddish, but they’ll encounter one against North Dakota State.

Forward Rocky Kreuser, a 6-foot-10, 245-pound sophomore, shares the team lead with 11 3-pointers with nearly 48-percent accuracy. Kreuser had a big game in his first career start, scoring 23 points with the help of 5-of-6 3-point attempts against New Mexico State in the season opener.

The Zags have athletic bigs that have been able to guard on the perimeter. Brandon Clarke and Rui Hachimura are options to defend Kreuser. At the other end, Kreuser will have to match up against the versatility of GU’s bigs. Clarke and Hachimura are a combined 6 of 11 on 3s. Gonzaga figure to have an edge on the boards, coming in at plus 6.8 compared to NDSU’s minus 7.6.

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