Spokane, WA – Przernek Karnowski scored a team-high 22 points, as No.21 Gonzaga easily dispatched Southern Utah, 103-65, in the season opener for both teams.
Five others scored in double-figures for the Bulldogs (1-0), who lost to Ohio State in the second round of the NCAA tournament last season. Guy Landry Edi posted 16 points and seven rebounds, Sam Dower poured in 15, while David Stockton and Elias Harris netted 12 points apiece.
"By and large I was happy with our effort and happy with our defensive execution," said Gonzaga head coach Mark Few. "When you turn somebody over 28 times is when you get up and get after them. I think our guys took that to heart and did a nice job. Offensively they ran the floor well and shared it pretty good."
Jackson Stevenett scored a game-high 29 points on 11-of-15 shooting and pulled down six boards for the Thunderbirds (0-1), who begin their first season as a member of the Big Sky Conference under new head coach Nick Robinson.
"I felt we had good execution at times in the game but Gonzaga did what they like to do. They're well coached, an established program," said coach Robinson. "We'll continue to work, continue to improve and we'll be a better team next game."
Collie Wade was the only other player in double-digits for Southern Utah. He scored 10 points in the loss.
Gonzaga took control early and after Kevin Pangos drained a three to put the Bulldogs up 5-2, they never looked back. Shortly thereafter, the Zags went on a 10-0 run and took a 19-8 lead. Edi stole the ball from Chris Nsenki and threw down a fastbreak dunk to build the advantage to 14 with 3:45 to play in the half.
Up 44-27 to start the second half, Gonzaga continued to roll and began the period on a 12-2 run, capped by Dower's layup. With just under seven minutes left, Edi knocked down a jumper to extend the Bulldogs' margin to 38, matching their largest lead of the game.
Friday's meeting was the first between the two teams since Nov. 3, 1996 ... Southern Utah turned the ball over 28 times compared to just nine for Gonzaga.