January 10, 2020 / 5:22 AM / 13 days ago

No. 1 Gonzaga hammers USD once again

EditorsNote: 1st graf, six rebounds, not seven

Jan 9, 2020; San Diego, California, USA; San Diego Toreros forward James Jean-Marie (23) drives to the basket against Gonzaga Bulldogs forward Corey Kispert (24) and guard Ryan Woolridge (4) during the first half at Jenny Craig Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

Joel Ayayi recorded 20 points and six rebounds as top-ranked Gonzaga steamrolled host San Diego 94-50 in West Coast Conference play on Thursday night.

Filip Petrusev scored 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting as the Bulldogs (17-1, 3-0 WCC) won their ninth straight contest. Admon Gilder tallied 12 points and Corey Kispert added 10 as Gonzaga defeated San Diego for the 11th consecutive time and 22nd in the past 23 meetings.

The Bulldogs trailed once, at 1-0, before taking the lead for good as they won their 34th consecutive conference road game.

Braun Hartfield recorded nine points and seven rebounds, and Yauhen Massalski and Jared Rodriguez also scored nine points for the Toreros (7-11, 0-3). San Diego shot just 32.8 percent from the field, including 3 of 16 from 3-point range.

Gonzaga shot 48.6 percent and was 8 of 19 from behind the arc.

Killian Tillie collected 10 rebounds and three blocked shots as the Bulldogs held a 47-27 rebounding edge and enjoyed a 52-18 edge in points in the paint. Gonzaga also posted a 24-3 advantage in fast-break points.

This marks the third time San Diego has played a No. 1 team, and the setbacks have been by an average of 44 points.

The Toreros lost 101-71 on Dec. 9, 1995, to a Kansas team that included future NBA star Paul Pierce. The other occasion was a 96-38 loss on Feb. 23, 2017, to a Gonzaga club that eventually lost to North Carolina in the national championship game.

It was a five-point margin three-plus minutes into the game before Gonzaga went on a 17-1 run to open up a 27-6 lead. Tillie capped the burst with an inside basket with 11:34 left in the half.

The advantage reached 30 for the first time when Kispert scored on a layup with 3:36 left to make it 44-14.

Kispert buried a 3-pointer prior to the buzzer to give the Bulldogs a 53-16 halftime lead.

San Diego rattled off nine straight points early in the second half to trim its deficit to 32.

But the Bulldogs answered with a 13-3 spurt and Ayayi finished it with a 3-pointer with 11:38 left to make it 70-28.

Gonzaga continued to lead by a comfortable margin as coach Mark Few improved to 45-4 against the Toreros during his 21-season tenure.

—Field Level Media

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