Smith scores 27, No. 8 Gonzaga routs Portland 115-75

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Malachi Smith had a season-high 27 points with seven 3-pointers, and No. 8 Gonzaga used a dominant first half to rout Portland 115-75 on Saturday evening.

Gonzaga (16-3, 5-0 West Coast Conference) was never behind, taking a 40-14 lead with seven minutes left in the first half en route to their 75th straight home win in the NCAA and his 15th consecutive victory against Portland.

Gonzaga fired a flurry of 3 early, hitting six in the first 10 minutes while Portland (9-11, 1-4) shot 0 for 9 from behind the arc in that span.

“We knew their game plan was to pack the paint and so the coach was just telling us to be ready to shoot,” Smith said. “And we were ready. Once you hit that first shot, you know, it gets easier. The edge is just starting to look like an ocean.

Coming off of a 75-74 win at BYU on Thursday night, coach Mark Few wanted to make sure the effort was the same tonight.

“Overall it was a really good effort, especially after an emotional win and then dealing with a quick turnaround,” Few said. “Malachi and Julian (Strawther) shoot very deep effortlessly, so I think that helps us spread things out.”

Portland cut the deficit to 17 with 5:16 left in the half, but the Bulldogs responded with a 19-3 run, and Gonzaga led 61-28 at halftime.

Drew Timme scored 18 points for Gonzaga. Strawther added 14 points and seven rebounds, Nolan Hickman had 13 points, and Anton Watson and Ben Gregg each added 12. Ten players scored for the Bulldogs, who have now won 11 straight games.

Moses Wood led the Pilots with 19 points, shooting 6 of 13. Kristian Sjolund added 17 points and 12 rebounds.

“We turned the ball over on a pile, and all of those turnovers led to baskets at the other end. Lots of 3s and lots of easy shots,” Portland coach Shantay Legans said. “They just kept their foot on the accelerator the whole time, and we didn’t do our best tonight.”


The Zags have won 11 straight after losing to Baylor on Dec. 2 and remain atop the WCC standings.

Portland, after a 7-4 start, lost seven of nine.


Portland: Host San Diego Thursday night.

Gonzaga: Host Loyola-Marymount Thursday night.


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