Today, thousands of people from the Spokane area got the rare chance to see Gonzaga play within city limits. Those same people likely left saying "Eh, I'm cool with staying on the waiting list". I've seen a number of high flying, intense, and well played games between Memphis and Gonzaga. This was not one of them. One team shot 38%, the other shot 36%. The one that shot 38% won the game. It really was that simple in this one. Gonzaga simply could not make a shot with any consistency. Senior Steven Gray was 4-14 while Rob Sacre and Elias Harris combined to go 6-17. The end results was a Gonzaga lost at the Spokane Arena by a count of 62-58.
In a pretty odd and uncomfortable game, both teams held solid leads at certain points of the game. Gonzaga had an eight point advantage in the early going, gave it back and found itself down 10 midway through the second half. Both teams, however, could not make enough offensive plays to keep the other one down.
For Gonzaga, I just can't help but call this a team that lacks the talent to put anything consistent together. Watching the backcourt work today, I just don't know how any other conclusion can be drawn. Steven Gray is an excellent player, but he's never, ever, ever going to be a consistent threat. That is simply what he is. Perhaps he's asked to do too much. I'm not sure at this point. The rest of the guards, at this point, are plagued in that they are simply one dimensional. Down the line from Meech to Stockton to Carter and then you work into the Monninghoff, Arop, and Keita territory. Those latter three I think have the tools to be solid, but are just not getting the minutes at this point.
They are showing all the signs of this. The court is shrunk down when Meech is out there and David Stockton gets run past on defense. Rob Sacre struggles to get an interior pass and Elias Harris gets stripped because his drives are typically against two guys that sag off the Gonzaga guards.
While it isn't worth beating a horse that is well past dead, the question now is does this team have what it takes to overcome their shortcomings at put a run together in the remaining WCC schedule. You can't convince me that there is a team in the conference that is out and out better than the Zags. Today's game, without a doubt, was frustrating but all we can do now is hope this team puts together a run. For me...I hope that run includes some pressure defense.