Jan. 27, 2009
SPOKANE -- If you want the best seat in the house at the Kennel for Gonzaga's Thursday night showdown against St. Marys, you may need to dig out your camping gear and find a place to pitch your tent.
Students have wasted no time setting up an impromptu tent city near the McCarthey Athletic Center, all in order to be that much closer to the action on Thursday.
Named "Few-ville" by it's residents, more than 40 tents are given a number denoting their place in line to be the first ones into the Kennel on Thursday.
Students are braving bitterly cold temperatures, waiting for a WCC rivalry made even more heated by some very important rankings.
Gonzaga comes into the match-up having dominated Loyola Marymount University in a Saturday night showdown that was nothing more than a clinic on offense for the Zags. The 93-60 win over the Lions propelled the Zags back into the rankings. ESPN/USA Today had the Zags ranked at 25, meanwhile the Zags sit ranked 20th in the AP's top 25.
St. Mary's comes into Thursday's game with an impressive ranking of their own. They sit at 18 in ESPN's poll, but they find themselves ranked 22nd by the Associated Press.
No matter the numbers, Thursday promises to be an exciting match-up between two evenly ranked WCC foes.
The Zags have been playing well off the production of junior guard Matt Bouldin. Bouldin hit five three-pointers and had 18 points against LMU. Bouldin is averaging 13.1 points per game behind both Austin Daye and Josh Heytvelt.
Heytvelt is the team's leading scorer with 265 points on the season going into the match between St. Mary's. Daye is averaging 13.8 points in 25.8 minutes per game.
Gonzaga's Stephen Gray is pushing the offense along as well. Gray has made 31 three-pointers this season, propelling his shooting percentage to .459% on the season.
St. Mary's has some offensive weapons of their own. Aussie sophomore Patrick Mills comes into Thursday's match-up averaging 18.7 points per game. Mills and Omar Samhan are the Gaels' two leading scorers.
St. Marys comes off a 65-42 win at San Diego bringing their conference record to a perfect 5-0, to go along with their 18-1 season record.
Both teams are sure to put on a show Thursday night at an 8:00 p.m. tip-off time in front of a loud, rowdy and ready Bulldog crowd.
Courtesy of www.kxly.com