PDA

View Full Version : Gonzaga's Greatest Games



Zagquette
10-15-2009, 06:42 PM
This Decade of Excellence thing has really had me thinking about all the great games there have been over the last ten years. I was thinking to myself, how great would it be to have tapes of all those games.
I have a few of my favorites. GU v UA 2003, GU v UNC 2005. Then I found this site.

http://www.ncaaondemand.com/search?schools=gonzaga&year=&sport=&commit=%C2%A0%C2%A0%C2%A0Search%C2%A0%C2%A0%C2%A0

Not sure if you guys have seen it, but it has most of GU tournament games for $24.

So, this post has two purposes, share the link and then get your take on your top 5-10 favorite Zags games.


Here are mine in no specific order

2005 Gonzaga v Michigan State Maui Invitational
2006 Gonzaga v UW at K2
2006 Gonzaga v UNC
2005 Gonzaga v Oklahoma State
2001 Gonzaga v Virginia (NCAA Tournament)
2003 Gonzaga v Arizona (NCAA Tournament)
1999 Gonzaga v Florida

soccerdud
10-15-2009, 10:04 PM
not directly related to your post, but LOVE the sig.

Martin Centre Mad Man
10-16-2009, 08:53 AM
I would second your list of the greatest games and add a few earlier ones:

I would add Santa Clara v. Gonzaga in the Martin Centre (1995) when Steve Nash almost single-handedly broke the Zags three-year home winning streak. The dude went one on five for 40 minutes (or one on 3400 if you count the loudest, most hostile crowd I've ever seen at a sporting event) and still had enough gas at the end to hit a 40 foot circus shot three-pointer with a hand in his face to take the lead in the final seconds.

I would also add John Rillie's three-game hundred point WCC tournament from 1995 that gave the Zags their first NCAA tournament appearance.

The 1999 Stanford NCAA tournament was also pretty special - the Zags' first tournament win over a ranked opponent was huge.

gu03alum
10-16-2009, 09:27 AM
My favorite was the 2003 game against Arizona. I do not remember the 1999 game very well or it would probably be my all-time favorite.

kyle dixon
10-16-2009, 01:26 PM
Beating UW in the Spokane Arena in December of 1998 in the Spokane Arena. Coach Few shook hands with a dejected Dickau who was playing for UW, and who knew that he would end up in a GU uniform?

2005 beating UW after their Alaska Shootout championship. Also beating a highly ranked Georgia Tech (#3) team in Las Vegas and then beating OK State (already mentioned).

1994 beating Stanford in Maples in the NIT tournament.

bartruff1
10-16-2009, 01:37 PM
The first half against UCLA....the second half...I can't let it go....:mad:

cjm720
10-16-2009, 02:38 PM
2005 Gonzaga v Michigan State Maui Invitational - mine by far. Ammo vs. Ager...JP x 2 on the floor. Good memories from game day that remain today.

edited to add that the UA 2OT game was right up there, but my hangover the next day drops it down a notch. haha

go zags!!

MickMick
10-16-2009, 03:51 PM
This Decade of Excellence thing has really had me thinking about all the great games there have been over the last ten years. I was thinking to myself, how great would it be to have tapes of all those games.
I have a few of my favorites. GU v UA 2003, GU v UNC 2005. Then I found this site.

http://www.ncaaondemand.com/search?schools=gonzaga&year=&sport=&commit=%C2%A0%C2%A0%C2%A0Search%C2%A0%C2%A0%C2%A0

Not sure if you guys have seen it, but it has most of GU tournament games for $24.

So, this post has two purposes, share the link and then get your take on your top 5-10 favorite Zags games.


Here are mine in no specific order

2005 Gonzaga v Michigan State Maui Invitational
2006 Gonzaga v UW at K2
2006 Gonzaga v UNC
2005 Gonzaga v Oklahoma State
2001 Gonzaga v Virginia (NCAA Tournament)
2003 Gonzaga v Arizona (NCAA Tournament)
1999 Gonzaga v Florida



Can't beat this list. It pretty much sums it up.

If I were to add one that isn't here, it would be the game against 3rd ranked Georgia Tech in Las Vegas. The Zags won handily and it was the first time I saw JP Batista play at a very high level. They had no answer for him and the TV announcer called JP the "best 6th man in the nation. There isn't a coach in the country that wouldn't love to have this guy as their 6th man." Needless to say, JP won the starting job after that night and was never the 6th man again. I don't know the year, but Ammo, Batista, and Ravio were on the team.

I believe the following week, Oklahoma State assumed the #3 rank and Gonzaga went into Oklahoma and beat them as well. If I recall, Ammo got into a heated discussion with some OSU players on their way into the locker room at half time. I think Sutton Sr. was still the head coach then.


Edit: I found a link (http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/recap?gameId=243532250)

Wow...Will Bynum and Jarret Jack on that team. That had to be the Zag team with the most potential to go deep ever. Ronny, JP, Ammo, Ravio.

GoZags
10-16-2009, 04:23 PM
Well, I've just got my game face on (for the start of college basketball) by watching some vintage Zag games from my collection. Yes, I took the day off as the first official day of practice should be a Holiday for all (and Mrs. GoZags is out of town, so I can just lie around).

Today I re-watched Gus Johnson getting excited as Richie lit it up for 31 points as #10 seed Gonzaga upset #7 seed Louisville 77-66 in the first round '00 game in Tucson.

Gus Johnson also had the call for #10 seed Gonzaga's 82-76 upset win over #2 seed St. John's behind Matt's 26 (including 6 for 10 from three). This game needs to be on any list of alltime great Zag victories.

And perhaps my favorite of the day? Senior night for Casey and Mark '01 -- when GU beat Pepperdine in the Kennel. I believe that's the last time that GU rushed the court in Spokane.

I also watched the CBS special "Road to the Final Four" from March '99, narrated by Greg Gumbel. Lots and lots of Zag locker room and on the court footage, with some great, emotional speeches from Munse.

The bottom line? I'm ready for Basketball season to begin. And I'm proud to be a Zag.

maynard g krebs
10-16-2009, 04:44 PM
In my mind, the biggest win was over 2 seed Stanford to make the 99 S16.

First time I noticed the Zags, Rillie going off in the WCC tourney in '95.

The game that officially made me a fan, the 88-82 loss to a very good UW team in Dec. '97. Frahm, Santangelo, Hall, Henndrix, Calvary etc. I left that game scratching my head, going "how did Gonzaga manage to get these guys". Went to that game neutral, left as a Zag fan.

Others- Fla 99 for the E8, Va. 01 for the S16 with Dickau exploding for 20+ in the 1st half and Calvary's tipin.

dawgfather11
10-16-2009, 05:04 PM
I liked the GU Missouri game at the BIS

gamagin
10-16-2009, 06:19 PM
The first half against UCLA....the second half...I can't let it go....:mad:

This game to the Zags is what Bill Buckner's error was to Boston Redsox fans in 1986, which is to say, memorable. Unforgettable.

Buckner, like JP, allowed a routine grounder (read: wrap up the play & the ball, JP !) by New York Mets outfielder, Mookie Wilson, to dribble through his legs in game six and watching helplessly as the winning run crossed home plate.

Moments that live on forever.

Another I think about because he's a friend, was Don Kardong (Bloomsday founder) missing out on the Silver medal in the Olympics because he slowed down and coasted, not realizing there was another runner behind him who passed him, on the last lap, many years ago.

McZag
10-17-2009, 05:46 PM
The first half against UCLA....the second half...I can't let it go....:mad:


I can't let it go either. Still hurts after gallons of Jameson.

My favorite games:

1994 - GU wins at Stanford in the NIT. First post season win in school history. Geoff Goss holds "Pac-10 Freshman of the year" Brevin Knight, scoreless!

1999 - GU beats Minnesota in the NCAA - "Do your homework" I was in the fourth row.
1999 - GU beats Stanford for first S16. I was in the nosebleeds, hoarse.
1999- GU beats Florida - I was in my buddies basement having a coronary.

2000- GU beats Lousiville in Denny Crum's last game as coach. Richie Frahm torches the Cardinals.
2000-GU beats St. John's for second S16.

2001- Calvary put back beats Virginia

2003 - GU beats Missouri in BIS with Ronny scoring virtually all the points at the free throw line at the end of the game.

2003-GU loses to Arizona in a game that felt like a win

2005- GU beats UNC. Happy Holidays

2009- Meech becomes first GU freshman to seal an NCAA win.


Feel free to correct the dates as I am going off of memory.

bballbeachbum
10-18-2009, 08:47 AM
The first half against UCLA....the second half...I can't let it go....:mad:

as painful a defeat as any in all my years of rooting all sports. won't share the others

but the Florida win is as joyous! that win is as glorious as any, including USA2-0 Mexico in the World Cup, USA Hockey at Lake Placid, and a choice few others.

It is that great to me.

kclubfounder
10-18-2009, 09:29 AM
The 1983 win at DePaul needs to be mentioned. For a year or two, a trivia question was "who are the only 3 teams to beat DePaul at All State Arena, which opened in 1980?"

The answer - UCLA, Notre Dame, and Gonzaga

I heard that question during a nationally televised DePaul game in the mid '80s. Pretty cool stuff back then.

LongIslandZagFan
10-18-2009, 11:14 AM
not directly related to your post, but LOVE the sig.


:lmao:

Sometimes sigs get lost in the shuffle... holy cow... hadn't caught that one until now. Love it.

azzagfan
10-18-2009, 11:28 AM
One of my favorites was going into Pauley in Dec, 1999 and beating the #11 ranked UCLA Bruins 59-43. The Zags forced the Bruins into their worst shooting day in the history of Pauley Pavilion, and pushed the Zags to their highest AP ranking to date (at that time), #22. Also, Santangelo had his sickest dunk as a Zag that day.

MDABE80
10-18-2009, 01:36 PM
I'm with Bart and Gamagin. The UCLA loss is one I can't forget. Absolutely this loss prevented another E 8 appearance and had all kinds of implications...none of which were good. It's on a par with Buckner's disaster.

The Arizona loss was another terrible mess but at least the Zags "won" in a losing effort. Nobody contests that somehow that game added to the legend.

I was in the office in 99 listening on the old AM radio my Daddy won in punchboard in 1958 over in Whitefish. Thing still works too. I was just sitting there being shocked by the UCLA game when we beat em THERE!! The UNC game just didn't have the luster even though it's big. Not long after, Duke wiped out the shine on the UNC win.

UConn's loss just killed me last year. Just did. Put the kids in such a hole. Heartbreaker too. I won't be forgetting that one.

Best of the best for me was that 99 team just plowing through the NCAA to the E8. Every win was HUGE and not supposed to happen. That was 2 weeks of sustained elation. Spokane seemed to understand it was in the National spotlight too. Magical is the only word that fits the feeling. I'd like to have that again. SO for me it's not one single game...it's "the" run.

FieldHouseFishHouse
10-18-2009, 04:18 PM
2007 at Stanford. A pre-Mushroomgate Heytvelt battled the Lopez twins in 2OT's. A game they probably needed for an at-large bid that year.

McZag
10-18-2009, 07:06 PM
One of my favorites was going into Pauley in Dec, 1999 and beating the #11 ranked UCLA Bruins 59-43. The Zags forced the Bruins into their worst shooting day in the history of Pauley Pavilion, and pushed the Zags to their highest AP ranking to date (at that time), #22. Also, Santangelo had his sickest dunk as a Zag that day.

Excellent win. Thanks for listing it.

Gozags99
10-20-2009, 06:24 PM
I'm sorry if somebody mentioned this already, but our huge upset over #5 Clemson in the Top of the World Classic is often forgotten. I believe this tournament win under Fitz was a part of the foundation for 1999 and beyond.

Gonzaga Shoots Past Clemson
November 24, 1997
It's no mystery why Gonzaga beat fifth-ranked Clemson on Sunday. When you shoot well, it's difficult to lose.

The Bulldogs shot 68% from the field, including 74% from three-point range, and 77% from the free-throw line in a 84-71 victory in the championship game of the Top of the World Classic at Fairbanks, Alaska.

Matt Santangelo scored a game-high 19 points, including five of seven three-point shots, and Quentin Hall added 18 for the Bulldogs (4-0). Greg Buckner scored 19 for Clemson (3-1), which made only two of 12 three-point attempts.

GoZags
10-20-2009, 08:04 PM
It was a big win and deserving of being mentioned (as were the other two victories in that tourney -- the drubbing of Tulsa and the win over Mississippi State).

However, these came on Dan's watch (not Fitz's).
-----------
How easily Zags have gone from hunter to target
Gonzaga once passed an important milepost in Alaska, recalls John Blanchette.
Related stories
John Blanchette - The Spokesman-Review
Homage has been paid, from time to time, to the generation of do-it-right dues the Gonzaga Bulldogs paid before they became celebrities on the college basketball scene.

The three straight Sweet 16s so prominent in Gonzaga's portfolio? Twenty years of program building went into them, plus a handful of baby-step victories along the way -- the raucous one over the last great USF team in 1981, the stunner at DePaul in '83, the NIT breakthrough against Stanford in '94.

So it didn't all begin with the Alaska expedition of 1997 -- an off-the-map trip that put Zag hoops very much on the map.
But the vision certainly crystalized there.

The Bulldogs return this week for a different tournament in a different town -- the Great Alaska Shootout in Anchorage -- as a very different commodity.

"We're almost the hunted up there, I guess," said Gonzaga coach Mark Few moments after Sunday's home victory over Montana. "I don't know if anybody else went further last year. And certainly Dan (Dickau) is the most high-profile guy in the tournament."

True enough, the Zags are the only Sweet 16 team from last March in the Shootout field -- though they are not the only "name" team. Indiana currently sits in the Top 25, while Texas and Tennessee -- like Gonzaga -- wait just outside. St. John's and Marquette and even Oregon State have distinguished pedigrees.

It's all a part of Gonzaga's most ambitious schedule yet, with three other Top 25 teams to face, two more from the Pac-10 and three more which played in the post-season last March.
Ho and hum. All very "trad" stuff for the Zags by now.
In the fall of 1997, it was not so traditional. It was borderline suicidal.

The reins of the program had just been turned over to Dan Monson, and a year or so in advance of that the Zags had booked themselves into something called the Top of the World Classic in Fairbanks -- an eight-team, Shootout-style affair with a similarly nasty field. Like the Shootout, it was an "exempt" tournament -- the games not counting against the NCAA limit.

"A leap of faith?" said Few, Monson's assistant at the time. "Yeah, I guess you could call it that.

"We had never played in one of the exempt tournaments before. Certainly, we had never thrown ourselves into a field like that before. We had played occasional games against that kind of competition."

What's more, the Zags were coming off just a 15-12 season that included four straight losses to close the season. Paul Rogers, the center on GU's 1995 NCAA team, had turned pro prematurely. The first two players off the bench were brand new to the program. The head coach was a rookie.

So the Zags went to Fairbanks and opened against Tulsa, a team coached by Bill Self -- now at Illinois, which topped GU in this year's season-opener -- that had reached the NCAA Tournament second round the year before.

And the result was pretty much what you'd expect.
Gonzaga 78, Tulsa 40.
"They had seven points just before the half and threw in a 3-pointer right at the buzzer to get to 10," recalled Few. "Bill Self reminds me of that constantly."

Mississippi State was up next -- a team which had reached the Final Four just two seasons before. It was considerably closer: Zags 70, MSU 68.

Then in the finals, No. 5 Clemson fell 84-71 -- Gonzaga's first victory over a ranked team since 1959, when the Zags took care of No. 13 Seattle University at the Coliseum.

"To be honest, those teams had no clue what we were about," said Few, "and a lot of teams don't prepare for those games the way they do later."

Still, the Zags shot 56 percent for three games -- 65 from 3-point range. They trailed only once the entire tournament, by two points in the first half against MSU.

A week later, there would be a near-miss -- 70-68 -- against defending NCAA champion Michigan State. That Gonzaga team would, of course, go on to win the West Coast Conference regular season title and would, of course, get hosed by the NCAA selectors when it failed to win the conference tournament.
Still, the lesson had been learned.

"It totally convinced our staff -- and more importantly, our kids -- that we could play with any team in the country," Few said of that Top-of-the-World feeling.

"A switch went off that we could play this style and that it's going to work. That was the springboard to everything, including the belief that we had players who not only could get to the (NCAA) tournament but go deep into it."

And, of course, there was the validation of Monson and Few's push for a more challenging schedule.

"If you go up there and drop all three, you'll never do it again," Few acknowledged. "But winning confirmed that we had to play as tough a non-league schedule as we could make, within reason. It's only going to pay dividends in the end. It's going to help us in recruiting, and it's going to show our guys either where we are or where we need to be."

The "within reason" part is critical -- Few will play established Top 25 teams on their courts, but he is determined to wheedle some neutral-court opportunities, too. Next year, he's tied the Zags into the Maui Classic, another three-day affair.

"The exempt tournaments mimic the NCAA more than anything else out there," he said. "You have to play great teams on neutral courts with neutral officials on short preparation."
So, naturally, the NCAA is trying to do away with them.
"Well, nobody said the NCAA does things in a logical or intelligent way," said Few.

At the time, GU's new scheduling ethic seemed more bold than intelligent. But since that Alaska coming out, the Zags have managed to knock off at least one ranked opponent every season.
"Five years ago, I don't think anybody would have believed where the bar is set now," Few said.

High, he means. Halfway to the North Pole.

Gozags99
10-21-2009, 07:35 AM
GoZags, thanks for the correction. I did not mean to steal anything away from Monson! I should credit Fitz with the Shootout Spokane tournament victories and the trip to the '95 dance. NIT trips too.

NotoriousZ
10-21-2009, 08:08 AM
...
Best of the best for me was that 99 team just plowing through the NCAA to the E8. Every win was HUGE and not supposed to happen. That was 2 weeks of sustained elation. Spokane seemed to understand it was in the National spotlight too. Magical is the only word that fits the feeling. I'd like to have that again. SO for me it's not one single game...it's "the" run.

Nothing we do is going to produce that feeling again. The slipper doesn't fit anymore, and hopefully never will again. Maybe if we can get in a final 4 we will experience something close to "the" run, but you're only Cinderella once--and what a great one it was. If we can someday win the whole thing it would absolutely be magical, but in a different way.

Great stuff on the '97 season Gozags99 and GoZags, that absolutely set the table for the '99 run!