Gonzaga’s West Coast Conference opener has been pushed back for a second time.
The Zags announced Thursday afternoon their Saturday road game against Loyola Marymount has been postponed due to the “university’s health and safety protocols,” according to GU release.
Fourth-ranked Gonzaga (11-2) was scheduled to open WCC play Thursday at San Diego, but that game was called off on Tuesday in response to COVID-19 issues in the Toreros’ program.
GU is working with LMU, San Diego and the conference office to reschedule the two games.
Six of the seven WCC games scheduled for Thursday and Saturday have been postponed. The only game remaining on opening weekend is San Francisco (13-1) visiting Saint Mary’s (12-3) on Saturday.
College basketball schedules have been hit hard with postponements and cancellations in response to the country’s rising COVID-19 cases. As of Thursday afternoon, at least 125 December games have been affected with most postponements/cancellations coming in the last two weeks, according to CBSsports.com’s Matt Norlander.
Gonzaga and WCC members Pepperdine, Portland, San Diego and Santa Clara are among 60-plus college programs on COVID pauses. More than 100 college teams have had COVID pauses in December.
The Zags’ Dec. 12 game against Washington was canceled due to COVID-19 concerns in the Huskies’ program.
The next two games on Gonzaga’s schedule are at home versus San Francisco Thursday and versus Pepperdine on Jan. 8.
“We will work with our medical team to assess the team’s status after the weekend,” Gonzaga Athletic Director Chris Standiford said.
Gonzaga had five games canceled/postponed last season in December, including a Dec. 5 showdown against No. 2 Baylor in Indianapolis. The Zags announced a COVID pause two days later, erasing games against Tarleton State, Southern, Northern Arizona and Idaho.
The Zags rescheduled NAU and defeated the Lumberjacks 88-58 a few weeks later. Gonzaga faced Baylor in the NCAA championship game in April, falling 86-70.
Gonzaga’s WCC schedule had several revisions due to the virus, but the Zags eventually played 15 of 16 conference games last season.
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