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Plucky Gonzaga overcoming injuries to show it's still to feared in the WCC

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Saint Mary s forward Beau Levesque (15) fights for the rebound against Gonzaga guard Kyle Dranginis (3) and center …

No Gary Bell Jr.? No problem, at least so far for Gonzaga.

Center Przemek Karnowski scored 15 points with nine rebounds and led another strong defensive performance for Gonzaga with seven blocks as the Bulldogs beat down arch rival Saint Mary's 73-51 on Thursday.

Gonzaga played its second full game without Bell, who is out 4-6 weeks with a broken hand. Guard Kevin Pangos and forward Sam Dower Jr. played through injuries in a gritty show of how much beating the Gaels means to them.

Gonzaga coach Mark Few said this week he has never been in a situation where his top three scorers, Bell, Pangos and Dower, were hampered by injuries at the same time. He figured he would find a way through it just as some of his friends in the coaching fraternity have done in the past.

He's handling it nicely so far with his team starting conference play 3-0 after dismantling the Gaels, who didn't do themselves any favors with sometimes sloppy play in the game.

Saint Mary's, a team that loves to penetrate and kick to open shooters, somehow played 40 minutes and managed just two assists.

It was the second consecutive strong performance by Karnowski, who seems to be finding a new level of confidence this season. Few also got strong performances from guard Kyle Dranginis, who scored in double figures for only the third time this season with 12 points, and forward Angel Nunez who came off the bench with 13 points and eight rebounds.

It was the third of four games for Gonzaga in an eight-day stretch. The Bulldogs will cap the tough stretch at home against Pacific on Saturday before getting a much needed five-day break between games.

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Kyle Ringo is the assistant editor of The Dagger on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at kyle.ringo@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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