USA Men’s Basketball Travel To Seattle To Face Gonzaga
South Alabama men’s basketball team is traveling to Seattle to face #16 ranked Gonzaga.
The Jags, 5-4 overall but 0-3 in road games so far this season and coming off of a triple-overtime loss at Rice on a 3-pointer at the buzzer of the third overtime for the win.
Gonzaga, 9-1 on the season, are ranked #16 in the coaches poll and #25 in the AP Poll.
The game on Saturday night is being called the “Battle in Seattle” by Gonzaga and coach Graves says it’s accurate. “Statistically, they are one of the top five teams in the country on the offensive end of the floor,” Graves told AL.com about Gonzaga. “They are really skilled and savvy and can hurt you in a lot of different ways. It’s going to put an extreme test on our abilities defensively. First and foremost, to get back in transition; they’re unbelievable in getting the ball up the floor and either getting a quick layup or hitting an open three. And then they’ve got two bigs – 7-1 (Przemek Karnowski) and 6-9 (Sam Dower) – that are very good around the rim and very efficient at scoring the basketball. We’re certainly going to have our hands full there.”
Gonzaga do not rely only on the inside game. Four players average at least 10 points per game and a fifth is only one-tenth of a point away from averaging 10 points per game as well. Defensively teams have to be able to not only guard them in the paint, but also on the perimeter.
Kevin Pangos is leading the Bulldogs by averaging 19.6 points per game, Dower averages 14.9 points and 7.0 rebounds per game, Gary Bell Jr. adds 13.9 points and 3.2 rebounds per game, Gerard Coleman adds 10.3 points and 2.5 rebounds per game and Przemek Karnowski adds 9.9 points and 8.1 rebounds per game. They average 89.4 points per game while allowing only 71.9. They also out rebound opponents 371-319.
The Jaguars are led by Augustine Rubit’s 16.6 points per game and 10.0 rebounds per game. Mychal Ammons follows that up with 9 points per game and 8 rebounds per game. Ken “Juice” Williams averages 8.8 points and 3.5 rebounds per game, Barrington Stevens III averages 8.5 points and 2 rebounds per game, ANtoine Allen averages 8.1 points and 3.0 rebounds per game and Aakim Saintil averages 7.6 points and 1.5 rebounds per game.
USA and Gonzaga tips off in the “Battle in Seattle” on Saturday at 9pm CST. The game will be carried on 105.5FM WNSP and will be on the Root Sports Network for television.