SPOKANE, Wash. (AP)Drew Timme scored 15 points and surpassed 2,000 for his career, leading No. 12 Gonzaga past Santa Clara 88-70 on Thursday night.
Timme, who also had 10 rebounds, became the third player in school history to reach the scoring milestone on a dunk with 16:02 remaining. He needs eight points to pass Jim McPhee for second on Gonzaga’s career scoring list. Timme also needs to average 18.9 points during the next 10 games to surpass Frank Burgess for the top spot.
”It’s kind of crazy, to be honest,” Timme said. ”I hit that number in high school and it’s pretty cool. It’s a lot of points. Like I’ve been saying all year, it’s super cool, but as long as we win that puts a smile on my face.
”We can enjoy the milestones when I’m done here.”
After having its 75-game home win streak snapped against Loyola Marymount, the Bulldogs (19-4, 8-1 West Coast Conference) relied on scoring in the paint and efficient shooting to extend their home winning streak over Santa Clara to 15.
Rasir Bolton scored 16 points and Julian Strawther added 12 for Gonzaga.
Carlos Stewart had 22 points for Santa Clara (16-8, 4-5). Brandin Podziemski was held to 14 points after scoring 38 against Pacific in the Broncos’ last game.
Santa Clara challenged early after Stewart’s 3-pointer opened the game – but that basket gave Santa Clara its only lead of the night.
The Bulldogs outscored the Broncos 28-4 in the paint and held an eight-rebound advantage in the first half. A 13-1 run midway through the first gave Gonzaga a 16-point lead it wouldn’t relinquish. Anton Watson scored 11 points to pace the Zags in the first, finishing with 18.
”To be able to do that defensively to such a good offensive team, they showed in the second half what they were capable of doing,” Gonzaga coach Mark Few said. ”I would definitely say it was up there with some of our better halves.”
Bolton’s corner 3-pointer in the second half gave the Zags a 22-point lead – their largest of the night.
”We had a really hard time throughout the game getting stops,” Santa Clara coach Herb Sendek said. ”They were really executing and scoring at a high level in a variety of ways. … Our offense got a little better in the second half, but in the first half, their defense made it really tough on us.”
Santa Clara: The Broncos have lost three straight and are tied for fourth in the WCC with Pacific with eight regular-season games remaining. Santa Clara hasn’t beaten Gonzaga in Spokane since 2007 and the Zags have won 49 of the last 51 meetings.
Gonzaga: The Zags have won three straight games ahead of a Saturday matchup with No. 18 Saint Mary’s. The Gaels hold a one-game lead in the WCC and beat the Zags 67-57 last time they played in Moraga, but are 2-8 in the last 10 games against Gonzaga.
Santa Clara: At San Francisco.
Gonzaga: On the road at Saint Mary’s.
AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/college-basketball and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-basketball-poll and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25