Sabonis leads No. 10 Gonzaga over Mount St. Mary's 101-56
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) Gonzaga coach Mark Few watched the No. 10 Bulldogs build big leads over Mount St. Mary's in the first half, only to see the visitors claw back into the game.
Gonzaga made it a rout in the second half, outscoring the Mountaineers 60-27 for a 101-56 victory Saturday night.
''We got complacent when we got up by 20, and they kept coming,'' Few said. ''We talked at halftime about not taking our foot off the pedal.''
Domantas Sabonis had 15 points and 14 rebounds and Silas Melson added 15 points for Gonzaga (2-0) in the game that was part of the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament.
BK Ashe had 16 points, and Will Miller 13 for Mount St. Mary's (0-4), which is 1-25 against ranked teams.
Gonzaga struggled early against the Mount's pressure defense, and suffered 14 turnovers in the game. But only two came in the final 19 minutes.
''That was big,'' Few said.
Kyle Dranginis and Eric McClellan each scored 13 points for Gonzaga, while Kyle Wiltjer had 12 points and nine rebounds. Josh Perkins added 11 points.
The Zags shot 62 percent in the second half and finished at 59 percent for the game.
McClellan did a good job of handling the pressure defense of Mount St. Mary's, Few said.
''We are on him to get our energy up,'' Few said. ''He did a really nice job.''
Gonzaga made 11 3-pointers in the game, including 10 in the second half.
The Mountaineers, the preseason favorite to win the Northeast Conference, have opened the season with losses at No. 3 Maryland, Ohio State, Washington and Gonzaga.
''We're striving to be a program like Gonzaga someday,'' Mount St. Mary's coach Jamion Christian said. ''It's been a 20-year process for Gonzaga and we're at the infancy stage of that.''
Christian said his team has shown improvement already this season.
''Down 12 at the half, that's 10 points better than we were a week ago,'' Christian said. ''We've gotten better exponentially this past week.''
Gonzaga held Mount St. Mary's to 35 percent shooting, including just 3 of 21 from 3-point range. The Zags won the rebound battle 49-25.
Gonzaga, coming off a 91-52 victory over Northern Arizona, led by 12 at halftime and blew the game open early in the second half.
The Zags hit three 3-pointers in an opening flurry, two by Kyle Dranginis, to push their lead to 52-31.
Josh Perkins sank a 3-pointer to lift Gonzaga to a 57-34 lead with 15 minutes left.
A stuff by Sabonis gave Gonzaga 69-43 lead with under 8 minutes left, and the Mountaineers were done.
Gonzaga made 9 of 14 shots to open the game and took an 18-5 lead with nearly 13 minutes left in the first half. All 18 Gonzaga points were scored in the paint.
Chris Wray's basket got the Mount into double figures with 8 minutes left in the first, but Eric McClellan replied with a 3-pointer to lift the Zags to a 26-11 lead.
The lead was 20 a few minutes later on Wiltjer's free throws.
Miller's 3-pointer capped an 8-0 run for the Mounts, who closed to 37-25.
Gonzaga led 41-29 at halftime, after shooting 55 percent while holding the Mount to 41 percent.
This was the first meeting between the two teams.
Mount St. Mary's forced Washington into 19 turnovers on Thursday, but still lost 100-67. BK Ashe and Junior Robinson, who is 5-foot-5, lead the Mountaineers at 12 points per game. Mount St. Mary's came in shooting 47.3 percent of its field goal attempts from 3-point range.
Gonzaga: The four members of Gonzaga's front court combined for 62 of Gonzaga's 91 points against Northern Arizona. Gonzaga led the nation in field goal shooting at .520 last season, and picked right up by shooting .529 against Northern Arizona.
Gonzaga coach Mark Few leads all active Division I coaches with a winning percentage of .810.
All the Mountaineers have ''MAYHEM'' written on the backs of their warm up shirts, referring to their style of play.
Mount St. Mary's plays at Elon on Thursday
Gonzaga plays Washington on Wednesday at the Battle 4 Atlantis in the Bahamas.