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Nigel Williams-Goss led Gonzaga in scoring against Iowa State on Sunday because, well, it was probably his turn.
It’s not often a basketball team can win against a high-level opponent by making just seven field goals in the second half.
The key moment, offensive player of the game and defensive player of the game from Gonzaga’s 73-71 win over Iowa State on Monday, Nov. 14, 2016 in Orlando, Florida.
As Gonzaga was frittering away all but one point of what had been an 18-point lead over Iowa State on Sunday, amazement seemed to be the one feeling Dick Vitale and ESPN broadcast partner Mike Morgan could agree upon. Unless it was a sense of unbelievability.
The stat sheet, eye test and scouting report state the obvious.
Iowa State’s guards vs. Gonzaga’s defense.
Repeat after Mark Few: When the Zags take care of the ball, they’re pretty potent offensively. See Friday’s second half against Florida. When the Zags don’t take care of the ball, they struggle at the offensive end. See Friday’s first half.
Gonzaga coach Mark Few knew Friday night’s game in Orlando against Florida would be the Zags’ sternest test of the season to this point. And it was the same for their fans watching the AdvoCare Invitational semifinal at home in Spokane. It wasn’t just the contest, a 77-72 Gonzaga win after the Bulldogs trailed by five at halftime. It was also the homespun nature of the ESPNU broadcast.
One could make a case for Silas Melson or Josh Perkins but we’ll go with Josh Perkins.
Junior guard Silas Melson drained a 3-pointer to give the Zags their first lead with 8:42 remaining.
Gonzaga fired several ill-advised passes that left coach Mark Few with hands on hips and asking, ‘Why?’
Florida is Gonzaga’s assignment in the AdvoCare Invitational semifinals but it could pass for a March matchup.
So what else is there to do on Thanksgiving afternoon besides watch a Gonzaga basketball game from Florida? Eat a little bit? Sure. Catch some of the traditional holiday NFL game from Dallas? Maybe. Settle down for the John Wayne marathon on AMC? OK, that’s hard to resist. But all of those took a backseat Thursday, though, if you are a Gonzaga fan. The Zags were on. Playing in a tournament in which they have never lost.
Gonzaga’s schedule, according to coach Mark Few, is about to “amp up.”