Gonzaga Bulldogs: Takeaways from a 91-74 win over Arizona

Rui Hachimura, Gonzaga Bulldogs (Photo by Darryl Oumi/Getty Images)
Rui Hachimura, Gonzaga Bulldogs (Photo by Darryl Oumi/Getty Images) /
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Gonzaga Bulldogs
Rui Hachimura, Gonzaga Bulldogs. (Photo by Darryl Oumi/Getty Images) /

Zags Defense leads to Offense

The Zags stepped up their defensive game when it was needed most. They only allowed Arizona to score 29 points in the second half holding them to 8 of 22 from the field. The Zags defense is for real! From the great words of Rocky Balboa, “It ain’t how hard you can hit. it’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward.” That is what the Zags did.

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A strong defense leads to a strong offense. The Zags offense kept control of the ball only turning it over two times in the second half. They flipped the switch and began to play their strong offensive game. The Bulldogs had 16 second-chance points compared to none for Arizona and shot seven of eighteen from the three-point line.  What happens when Killian Tillie comes back from his injury? It should be an even better defense and higher offensive output.

Up Next for the Zags

The Bulldogs play the top-ranked Duke Blue Devils, in the Maui Invitational final tonight. Do the Zags have a chance? If they continue to play defense at such a high-intensity level, they most definitely have a fighting chance. They must take care of the ball while cutting down the turnovers.

What to watch for in the final

Gonzaga Bulldogs forwards Rui Hachimura and Brandon Clarke vs Zion Williams and company. Hachimura, a 6’8” 230 pounder, has an all-around NBA game and will play alongside junior transfer Brandon Clarke. Both Zags players have the ability to score, rebound, and block shots, which will be necessary against a 6’7” 285 pound, Zion Williams who can jump out of the rafters.

The Blue Devils will keep their big guys coming, with freshmen RJ Barret, Cam Reddish, and junior Marques Bolden. All five of these players are men amongst boys and a handful of them, future NBA lottery picks.

Who: Gonzaga Bulldogs Vs. Duke Blue Devils

What: Maui Jim Maui Invitational Final

When: 2:00 p.m. PST

Line: Gonzaga +7

Check back with us after the finals for our takeaways.