SAN FRANCISCO – Gonzaga seems to bring out the best in West Coast Conference opponents. It happened Thursday night against Santa Clara and the Zags are bracing for more of the same tonight against San Francisco.
The Dons beat visiting Gonzaga three straight times from 2010-2012 but the current squad is struggling at 9-15, 3-9 in the WCC.
USF dropped into ninth place after losing to Portland 69-57 on Thursday.
Gonzaga won the first meeting, 88-57, a month ago. Forward Kruize Pinkins, who averages 15.2 points, made four 3-pointers and scored 20 points in Spokane. He was limited to eight points by the Pilots. Forward Mark Tollefsen, who has made a team-high 33 3-pointers, averages 14.4 points.
“They trap every pass, every ball screen so you really don’t get much offensive rhythm,” Gonzaga coach Mark Few said. “You just have to play. Pinkins is shooting it well from 3, it started at our place, Tollefsen … we’re going to face bigs that can shoot 3s so that’s an adjustment.”
Gonzaga’s 16-game winning streak is the program’s longest since the 2006 team won 20 in a row. The Bulldogs made 69 percent from the field against Santa Clara, seventh-best in single-game history. The 1996 Zags set the school record by making 71.8 percent against Saint Mary’s.
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