MALIBU, Calif. (AP)Drew Timme scored 22 of his 34 points in the second half and Julian Strawther added 28 points to help No. 13 Gonzaga beat Pepperdine 97-88 Saturday night and extend its winning streak over the Waves to 45 games.
The Bulldogs (23-5, 12-2 West Coast Conference), who haven’t lost to Pepperdine (9-10, 2-12) since Jan. 18, 2002 and have won 20 straight on the road against the Waves.
Timme’s last basket, a layup that gave the Gonzaga a 78-70 lead with 5:30 to play, moved him past Bill Cartwright, who scored 2,116 points for San Francisco (1975-79), into eighth on the West Coast Conference’s career scoring list with 2,117.
Jevon Porter scored nine points in a 16-6 run, capped by Houston Mallette’s 3-pointer, that trimmed Pepperdine’s deficit to 78-77 with 3:50 remaining. Rasir Bolton hit a 3-pointer 27 seconds later, added a three-point play with about two minutes to go and hit another 3 to make it 90-83 with 1:13 left.
”We survived with our offense tonight,” Gonzaga coach Mark Few said. ”Sometimes that’s what you have to do.”
Mallette led the Waves with 22 points. Porter and Maxwell Lewis added 20 points apiece.
”We know that, you know, they’re a very talented team and that has a lot of tough shotmakers,” Strawther said. ”The main thing we were trying to avoid was getting into a track meet with them, so we’re disappointed in that.
”But I’m just glad we gritted it out.”
Strawther and Mallette traded tough shot after tough shot in the first half, knocking down pull-up 3s, hitting turn-around jumpers, dropping in running floaters and finishing at the rim. There were five ties and 17 lead changes as Mallette hit two 3-pointers and scored 13 points on 5-of-8 shooting, while Strawther made 8 of 11 from the field, including three 3s, and scored 19 points. Timme scored eight points during an 18-7 run over the final four-plus minutes of the half that made it 50-42.
”Julian got it going in the first half and (the Pepperdine defense) got really aggressive toward him – as they should because he was hot – and it really opened the game up for me,” Timme said.
Timme scored all of Gonzaga’s points in an 8-4 spurt to open the second half that pushed the lead to 12 points less than two minutes in. But, Mike Mitchell Jr. answered with a 3-pointer and Lewis added another before his layup with 15:46 to play cut the Pepperdine deficit to 58-54.
”I talked ad nauseum about how talented they are and how dangerous they are and they showed it tonight,” Few said of the Waves. ”Sometimes it takes toughness on offense, too, to step up and take big shots.
”Obviously Ra’s (Bolton’s) shots were huge. Drew was big, delivering in the second half and the second part of the first half. Julian has just been playing great.”
Timme grabbed seven rebounds and his 822 career rebounds are sixth-most in program history. Przemek Karnowski had 815 rebounds from 2012-17.
Gonzaga: Hosts San Diego on Thursday.
Pepperdine: At Santa Clara on Thursday.
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