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Gonzaga adds NAIA Eastern Oregon to nonconference schedule

Gonzaga guard Joe Few (15) launches a shot in the second half of the Zags' 115-62 win in an exhibition game against Eastern Oregon on Oct. 31, 2021.  (By Tyler Tjomsland/The Spokesman-Review)

Gonzaga’s basketball schedule continues to be unveiled one game at a time.

The latest addition is Eastern Oregon on Nov. 14, according to a release from the NAIA school located in La Grande.

The Zags and Mountaineers will square off for the third consecutive season. Gonzaga cruised to a 120-42 victory last December, setting a program record for largest margin of victory in the process. GU rolled to a 115-62 exhibition game victory in October, 2021.

Eastern Oregon finished 21-11 overall, 16-6 in the Cascade Collegiate Conference (CCC) to earn second place last season. The Mountaineers reached the CCC Tournament title game before falling to eventual national champion College of Idaho 87-56.

Eastern Oregon lost to Thomas More 66-44 in the opening round of the NAIA Tournament.

Chris Kemp was officially promoted to EOU head coach in June after two seasons as interim head coach. Kemp was an assistant coach at North Idaho College in 2016-17 before joining Eastern Oregon’s program as an assistant.

“We are super excited for our guys to get the opportunity to compete on the biggest stage,” Kemp said. “The atmosphere and level is unlike any in the country.”

EOU’s roster includes two players from Genesis Prep in Post Falls, grad student Jonny Hillman and freshman Caleb Schroeder, St. Maries High’s Greyson Sands and North Idaho College transfer Vanti Erving.

The contest fills in a gap on Gonzaga’s schedule following its Nov. 10 season opener vs. Yale at the McCarthey Athletic Center. It’s possible another game could be added after GU-EOU before the Zags face Purdue on Nov. 20 in the first round of the Maui Invitational, which has been relocated to Honolulu due to the devastating wildfires in Lahaina.