Gonzaga Bulldogs

No. 7 Gonzaga Routs South Dakota 102-65

No. 7 Gonzaga Routs South Dakota 102-65

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) Zach Collins scored 21 points as undefeated and No. 7 Gonzaga beat South Dakota 102-65 on Wednesday night for the best start in program history.

Collins made all nine of his field goal attempts for Gonzaga (12-0), which has won its first 12 games for the first time in a century of basketball.

Nigel Williams-Goss added 14 points and nine rebounds for Gonzaga, which shot 53 percent.

Matt Mooney and Tyler Flack scored 13 points each for South Dakota (9-6), which couldn't overcome 36 percent shooting.

The Zags concluded a non-conference slate that included victories over Florida, Iowa State, No. 18 Arizona, Washington, Tennessee and San Diego State.

They have only West Coast Conference games remaining on their schedule, prompting Tennessee coach Rick Barnes to wonder last weekend if they might go undefeated through the regular season. The Bulldogs still have to play at least twice against No. 19 Saint Mary's.

South Dakota hung with the Zags early, trailing just 20-18 9 minutes into the game. But the Zags went on a 9-0 run to push the lead to 11 points.

After a South Dakota basket, Gonzaga scored 10 consecutive points, including 3-pointers by Williams-Goss and Johnathan Williams, for a 39-20 lead. The Coyotes were held to one basket over a span of nearly 7 minutes.

Gonzaga led 52-25 at halftime, after shooting 60.6 percent from the field and making 7 of 14 from 3-point range. South Dakota shot only 31 percent in the first half, missing all nine of its 3-point attempts. The Coyotes scored only seven points in the final 10 minutes of the first half.

The fast start continued a trend in which Gonzaga has outscored its previous six opponents by an average of 41-26 in the first half.

South Dakota's shooting improved in the second half, but it couldn't make up any ground on the Bulldogs.

BIG PICTURE

South Dakota: The Coyotes are off to their best start since joining Division I in 2008. Eight different Coyotes have led the team in scoring.

Gonzaga: Gonzaga eclipsed the 1944 Zags, who started the season with 11 consecutive victories. Since joining the NCAA in 1958, the Zags' best start was 9-0 in 2012-13. Gonzaga is holding opponents to 36 percent shooting this season, sixth in the nation. The Bulldogs have trailed in the second half only one time this season, against Florida; they trailed for only 33 minutes in their first 11 games.

UP NEXT

South Dakota hosts Omaha on Dec. 29 to open Summit League play.

Gonzaga hosts Pepperdine to open West Coast Conference play on Dec. 29.
 


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