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Zags win conference opener over Portland

Gonzaga took care of business tonight at home against the Portland Pilots, 74-61.  Steven Gray led the way for the Zags that showed flashes of excellence but had more inconsistent moments that plagued them early.  Portland closed the gap a number of times but the Bulldogs made enough plays to squash any rallies and pull out the game in Spokane.  

The best news of the night was that the entire team appears to be at full strength; meaning Steven Gray is healthy.  The senior guard scored 19 tonight in the win and seemed to be his old self again.  He attempted 16 shots and made a number of plays when the momentum was going against the Zags.  

A few ugly stats made this game closer than it had to be tonight.  Portland outrebounded the Zags, 29-24 and Gonzaga only had 11 assists versus nine turnovers.  The best part of the night personally was Mangisto Arop.  Manny played 20 minutes, and had three boards, all offensive.  He had eight points and hit 2-3 from deep and reminded me of last season against the WCC.  There simply isn't a WCC team that can matchup with what he does and all the plays he makes.  We've been drooling over Mathis and Mathis but I think, and hope, Manny will have a great WCC season.