Feb. 16, 2007
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 17
Memphis (22-3, 12-0 C-USA) at Gonzaga (18-9, 8-3)
Location: Spokane, Wash. - Spokane Arena
Time: 3:00 PM (PST)
Preview: A game with possible NCAA Tournament implications, Gonzaga plays its final non-conference matchup of the regular season at Spokane Arena, hosting No. 8 Memphis. The Zags are looking to rebound after a rough week that saw second leading scorer Josh Heytvelt suspended from the team indefinitely and a loss to Santa Clara that knocked GU into second place in the WCC. A win over the Tigers could give the Bulldogs the lift they need heading into the WCC Tournament in two weeks. A win for Gonzaga will not be an easy task, as Memphis is riding a 14-game winning streak that extends back to December 20. The Tigers are just one league win away from clinching at least a share of the Conference USA regular season title and have gone 6-2 on the road this season. Memphis is averaging 80.3 points per game this season and outscoring opponents by an average of 18.0 points per game, the fourth best scoring margin in the nation. Gonzaga's league-leading offense will have to outperform a Tiger defense that is holding opponents to 38 percent shooting from the field this season. After their worst free-throw shooting night of the season against the Broncos, the Zags will need to take advantage of their 77.2 team shooting percentage from the charity stripe, which ranks fourth in the nation, against Memphis.
Memphis' Key Players: Chris Douglas-Roberts - 15 ppg, .547 FG percentage; Joey Dorsey - 9.8 rpg, .628 FG percentage
Gonzaga's Key Players: Derek Raivio - 18.2 ppg, .957 FT percentage; Jeremy Pargo - 12.6 ppg, 4.7 apg
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 17
Loyola Marymount (12-15, 4-7) at Pepperdine (6-21, 2-9)
Location: Malibu, Calif. - Firestone Fieldhouse
Time: 8:00 PM (PST)
Preview: The latest installment of LMU and Pepperdine's SoCal rivalry tips off at 8:00 on Saturday night on ESPNU. The Waves and first-year head coach Vance Walberg are looking to finish the regular season strong after losing five straight heading into Saturday's game, while LMU has won three of its last five including an upset of WCC powerhouse Gonzaga. Pepperdine is seeking its seventh win of the season, which would match its win total from last season with two regular season games left. The Lions dropped the teams' first meeting of the season 57-55 at Gersten Pavilion on January 20, but has since gone 4-2, improving to 4-7 in the WCC. The Waves are coming off of a 97-85 loss to San Diego last week that saw four players hit double digits in scoring. Loyola Marymount was without leading scorer Matthew Knight due to an injury and snapped a three-game winning streak last time out, dropping a 76-69 decision to USF. The Waves hold an 84-60 advantage in the all-time series and have won four of the last five games.
Loyola Marymount's Key Players: Matthew Knight - 16.4 ppg, 8.0 rpg; Adoyah Miller - 12.0 ppg, .393 three-point FG percentage
Pepperdine's Key Players: Marvin Lea - 15.4 ppg, 2.0 spg; Chase Griffin - 14.7 ppg, 4.5 rpg
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 19
Portland (8-19, 4-7) at Gonzaga (18-9, 8-3)
Location: Spokane, Wash. - McCarthey Center
Time: 6:00 PM (PST)
Television: Fox SportsNet Northwest
Preview: The first of two televised WCC games on Monday features the final regular season meeting of the season between Northwest rivals Portland and Gonzaga. The Zags will be coming off of a non-conference matchup at Spokane Arena with Memphis. UP took home a big win over Saint Mary's at the Chiles Center last week, improving to 4-7 in the WCC. The Pilots have won two of their last three games and are looking to earn their first win over the Bulldogs since 2003. Gonzaga enters the week leading the conference in seven statistical categories including scoring, shooting, free throw shooting and three-point shooting. Portland is looking to avenge an 80-68 loss to Gonzaga in the teams' first meeting of the season on January 22 at the Chiles Center. The Zags lead the all-time series 78-65 and have won six straight against UP.
Portland's Key Players: Darren Cooper - 13.1 ppg, 4.2 rpg; Jamie Jones - 10.5 ppg, 7.3 rpg
Gonzaga's Key Players: Jeremy Pargo - 12.6 ppg, 4.7 apg; Sean Mallon - 8.9 ppg, .489 FG percentage
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 19
San Francisco (11-15, 7-4) at Saint Mary's (13-14, 5-6)
Location: Moraga, Calif. - McKeon Pavilion
Time: 9:00 PM (PST)
Preview: ESPN's Big Monday features a pair of Bay Area rivals in San Francisco and Saint Mary's. The two teams meet at McKeon Pavilion on Monday in their second game this year. In their last encounter on January 20, Saint Mary's came away with a 71-64 overtime win, but the Gaels have won just two games since and have dropped four straight. The Dons, on the other hand, have been one of the hottest teams in the WCC over the past five games going 4-1 and securing sole possession of third place with their 7-4 league record. USF boasts four players averaging in double digits in scoring, the top three point shooter in the WCC in Danny Cavic (46.7 percent) and the top pickpocket in Armondo Surratt (2.35 spg). The Gaels are tough to beat at home however, going 11-5 this season at McKeon Pavilion, including an 80-75 win over WCC powerhouse Gonzaga in January. USF leads the all-time series 103-58, but SMC has taken seven of its last 10 against the Dons.
San Francisco's Key Players: Armondo Surratt - 14.0 ppg, 3.46 apg; Alan Wiggins, Jr. - 14.5 ppg, 7.2 rpg
Saint Mary's Key Players: Diamon Simpson - 14.0 ppg, 7.3 rpg; Omar Samhan - 9.3 ppg, 5.4 rpg