Gonzaga took care of business as expected last night against NW Nazarene by a score of 93-45. The Bulldogs were paced by newcomer Przemek Karnowski who showed glimpses of what made him such an anticipated recruit coming out of Poland. The hulking center ended up with 17 points and 8 rebounds in 17 minutes of action. As you would guess, NW Nazarene didn't have a player on their roster that could match Karnowski's size so this was a great way to ease the newest Bulldog into the college game.
Karnowski did most of his damage in the second half but it was familiar faces that got the Zags out to an early lead. Elias Harris, who has been hampered with a groin injury, looked good last night and scored 12 points. He was joined in double figures by Gary Bell Jr. (11 points), Guy Landry Edi (10), Kevin Pangos (10), and Mike Hart (10). In particular, the star of the game in my eyes had to be Landry Edi. The senior wing looked like a different player out there. He was working well in the flow of the offense and also came down with eight rebounds, one shy of Mike Hart's team high nine boards.
In addition to seeing Przemek Karnowski in game action for the first time, Zag fans were also able to check out redshirt freshman Kyle Dranginis make his debut. The Nampa, ID native impressed as he finished with nine points and five rebounds. I was personally amazed by how much different he looks than when he was recruited out of Skyview High School. He's added a tremendous amount of strength and is going to be a big contributor this season.
Everyone's favorite walk ons also did their part. Freshman Rem Bakamus got his first points in a Zag uniform from the charity stripe. Vets Mike Hart and David Stockton also picked up where they left off. Hart was flying around and nearly got himself a double double with 10 points and nine rebounds. Stockton shot poorly from the floor at 1-8 from had a team high five assists and only one turnover.
Olynyk Out For Three Games
The Kelly Olynyk return tour will be postponed. It was announced prior to the game that the Canadian big man would be banned from game action until November 21st, a stretch which includes a game against West Virginia, for a violation of Gonzaga's student code of conduct.
The University did not and will not disclose what the exact issue was and I really don't care to speculate. In the grand scheme of things, three games is not catastrophic especially because I am skeptical just how much of an impact Kelly will have this season; particularly with the arrival of Karnowski.
Kelly's return coincides with the start of the Old Spice Classic and it will be nice to have the added depth for the holiday tournament.
As for the active and available Zags, the training wheels officially come off on November 9th when the regular season kicks off against Southern Utah at the Kennel.