Recap and highlights: Gonzaga dazzles on offense during 102-76 win over Pacific

Feb. 17—Gonzaga's defense was far from perfect on Saturday night.

It didn't have to be.

The Bulldogs put together a sensational offensive effort in a 102-76 win over the Pacific Tigers at McCarthey Athletic Center.

The Zags (20-6, 10-2 West Coast) shot 66% from the field and 8 of 20 on 3-pointers. Leading scorer Graham Ike (21 points) was a perfect 9 of 9 shooting with six rebounds.

Ryan Nembhard was nearly flawless leading the GU offense. His brother Ryan, a former Gonzaga standout now with the Indiana Pacers, was in attendance while on NBA All-Star break.

Nembhard used that motivation to score 18 points with 10 assists and just one turnover.

Anton Watson (17 points), Braden Huff (17) and Nolan Hickman (16) made five Zags in double figures.

The Tigers (6-22, 0-13) trailed the whole game, but by little as 12 points with 8:52 remaining.

That's when Nembhard keyed a 12-0 run with a 3-pointer, a layup and an assist to Huff.

Gonzaga hits the road for a game at Portland on Thursday. Tipoff is set for 6 p.m.


Andrew Nembhard watches younger brother Ryan post double-double in Gonzaga's win over Pacific

Andrew Nembhard played in a lot of games at The Kennel in his two seasons at Gonzaga, but Saturday was his first time as a spectator. The reason the former Zag standout point guard was in town: To get a close-up view on one of his favorite players, younger brother Ryan guide Gonzaga's offense. — Read more

Difference makers: Ryan Nembhard, Graham Ike have big nights in Gonzaga's win over Pacific

Graham Ike — Read more

First half

19:43 — GU 2, UP 0: Zags win the tip and waste little time getting the ball to Ike down low for the first basket.

17:10 — GU 12, UP 0: Rapid start for the Zags, who take a 10-point lead and Pacific calls a timeout. Nembhard leads with five points, Ike adds four and Hickman has three.

16:00 — GU 14, UP 4: Martindale is called for a foul underneath and GU will shoot two free throws on the other side of the U16 media timeout. Zags open 6 of 8 from the field and 2 of 3 on 3-pointers.

12:11 — GU 23, UP 11: Tigers get some shots to fall, but can't keep up with the Zags, who are shooting 69% from the field. UP takes a timeout.

6:48 — GU 38, UP 25: Zags knocking down baskets at will in the first half, 15 of 21 from the field and 5 of 9 on 3-pointers.

Nembhard and Hickman lead with nine points apiece. Nembhard adds four assists. Ike has eight points and five rebounds.

3:34 — GU 43, UP 28: Krajnovic gives Nembhard a breather. The freshman guard has been working into first halves to get either Nembhard or Hickman off the court. GU gets its lead to 18, before a 3-pointer from Pacific.


Gonzaga took control from the jump to take a 47-34 lead over Pacific.

Ryan Nembhard has been excellent with his brother in attendance. He has nine points and six assists.

Graham Ike leads all scorers with 15 points on 7 of 7 shooting from the field. He adds five rebounds.

Nick Blake leading Pacific with 13 points.

Second half

15:57 — GU 55, UP 43: Pacific makes a layup and Odum is called for a foul on the other end at the U16 media timeout. Tigers staying alive in the second half thanks to five points from Williams.

11:38 — GU 64, UP 50: Tigers not quite going away at the U12 media timeout.

Gonzaga is making it hard for them to get back in it though, shootign 67% from the field. Nembhard closing in on a double-double with 11 points and eight assists.

Ike leads with 21 points on 9 of 9 shooting. Watson (13 points) and Hickman (11) join them in double figures.

7:28 — GU 80, UP 61: Nembhard keys a 7-0 run with a 3-pointer, a layup and an assist to Huff on consecutive possessions. GU guard up to 18 points, nine assists, five rebounds and one turnover.

4:53 — GU 89, UP 68: GU cruising now. Nembhard gets his double-double with 18 points and 10 assists. Ike heads to the bench with 21 points, Watson (17 points), Hickman (16) and Huff (12) make five Zags in double figures.

1:59 — GU 95, UP 72: Reserves enter the game and the Zags are going to win this one.

Starting 5: Same group for the Zags of Ryan Nemhbard, Nolan Hickman, Graham Ike, Anton Watson and Ben Gregg.

Nembhard's older brother, Andrew, a GU alum who plays for the Indiana Pacers, is in attendance tonight.


Gonzaga's path seems to be clear, now it just needs to keep winning.

The Bulldogs (19-6, 9-2 West Coast) host the Pacific Tigers (6-21, 0-12) tonight at 6 p.m., looking to extend a three-game win streak that included a road upset of Kentucky last Saturday.

KHQ and Root Sports will carry the broadcast, also available on ESPN+ outside of the region.

The Tigers are one of the worst teams in the country, winless against Division I opponents since Nov. 26 and ranked No. 354 in the NCAA's NET Rankings.

Pacific did put up a fight against the Zags in Stockton, Calif., on Jan. 27, losing 82-73. We'll see if home court gives GU a bigger edge.

Series history

Gonzaga holds a 22-1 all-time record over Pacific and has not lost to the Tigers since they joined the WCC in 2013.

Team stats

Individual leaders

Game preview

Gonzaga returns home to take on Pacific team seeking first conference win

A few things have changed for Gonzaga since the Bulldogs dropped out of the national rankings for the first time in seven years after a 77-76 loss to Santa Clara on Jan. 11. — Read more

Key matchup: Pacific's Donovan Williams is likely to play heavy minutes, get to free throw line plenty against Gonzaga

Moe Odum was our choice for key matchup prior to Gonzaga's last game against Pacific, but Donovan Williams was probably the most impactful Tiger in a tightly contested game between teams that sit at opposite ends of the West Coast Conference spectrum. — Read more

More on the Zags

'He never quits.' Behind the quiet determination and enduring strength of Gonzaga's Graham Ike

Jeff Linder uses three categories to quantify the nature of a player's relationship with basketball. — Read more

Gonzaga rewind: Post-Kentucky performance and Ryan Nembhard-Graham Ike connection

Nolan Hickman knows what's coming next. — Read more

Gonzaga weathers 'a serious storm,' pulls away from shorthanded Loyola Marymount for 91-74 win

It took the better part of 32 minutes, but Gonzaga finally shook off a feisty Loyola Marymount squad that suited up just six scholarship players due to multiple injuries. Clinging to a one-point lead, Gonzaga rattled off 15 consecutive points and closed with a 19-3 spurt to pull away for a 91-74 West Coast Conference victory Thursday at Gersten Pavilion. — Read more

Gonzaga survives Will Johnston-induced headaches during 33-point outing for Loyola Marymount guard

LOS ANGELES — Will Johnston was somewhere on Gonzaga's scouting report prior to Thursday's game at Loyola Marymount, but the junior guard probably didn't occupy one of the top few spots — even with the Lions down to just six scholarship players at Gersten Pavilion. — Read more