Feature photo by Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review
MALIBU, Calif. – Przemek Karnowski and No. 3 Gonzaga cruised past Pepperdine 96-49 at Firestone Fieldhouse on Saturday night.
The Bulldogs, the only undefeated team left in the NCAA Division-I standings, now sit at 22-0 with a high chance of taking the No. 1 spot in the AP Top 25 following losses by No. 1 Villanova and No. 2 Kansas this week.
Karnowski led Gonzaga with 16 points on 8-of-11 shooting while Silas Melson added 15 points on 5-of-6 shooting. The Bulldogs shot 58.6 percent overall from the field while holding Pepperdine to 30.2 percent.
Gonzaga also outrebounded Pepperdine 44 to 32, as they won their 33rd consecutive matchup against the Waves.
In the first half, Gonzaga jumped out to an early 8-2 lead behind Karnowski’s hot start from the field. The Bulldogs continued to roll on offense, riding a 19-4 run to go up 27-8 before Lamond Murray Jr. and Jeremy Major kickstarted the Pepperdine offense midway through the half. Despite the Waves attack in the paint, Gonzaga entered halftime leading 43-21, shooting a blazing hot 63.3 percent from the field while holding Pepperdine to 28.6 percent.
In the second half, Murray Jr. came out of the half scoring the first eight points for Pepperdine, but Gonzaga hit the throttle again, shooting 55 percent from the field to go up by as much as 51, 94-43, with less than four minutes left to play.
With the loss, Pepperdine fell to 6-16 on the season.
Jeremy Major led the Waves with 13 points and two steals. Lamond Murray Jr., the leading scorer in the West Coast Conference, chipped in 12 points and five boards and Elijah Lee added 11 points. Pepperdine only had a total of six assists for the game.
Pepperdine will travel up to the University of San Francisco to take on the Dons on Thursday, February 2nd at 7 P.M.
Gonzaga will travel to BYU for the first time this season to face the Cougars on Thursday, February 2nd at 8 P.M.
— Gonzaga Athletics (@GonzagaBulldogs) January 29, 2017
— Pepperdine M. Hoops (@PeppBasketball) January 29, 2017
— Arthur Puu (@arthurpuu) January 29, 2017
Follow me on Twitter: @arthurpuu