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No Killian Tillie, No Problem as Gonzaga Downs LMU, 85-67

Drew Timme says whats up.

NCAA Basketball: Loyola Marymount at Gonzaga James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Drew Timme and Filip Petrusev showed up in a big way to help the short-handed Gonzaga Bulldogs take down the Loyola Marymount Lions, 85-67, on Thursday evening, in Spokane.

Prior to the game, it was announced that senior forward Killian Tillie would be available, if need be. Considering Tillie’s overall health, and the fact the Zags have a game against Saint Mary’s on the near horizon, the only way that Tillie would see the court in tonight’s game was if the Zags were losing.

Mark Few has an embarrassment of riches down low, however. Without Tillie in the mix, the freshman Timme earned the start and continued his stellar play from San Francisco last Saturday. Timme finished 17 points, eight rebounds, two assists, three steals, and a mondo block. It was a game that we can probably expect more of in the future from Timme. He shot 8-of-9 from the floor and did it in multiple ways down low.

Petrusev provided the perfect foil for Timme. Whereas Timme was the finesse guy tonight, Petrusev was the bruiser in the post. He finished with 21 points, garnering a majority of that through contact. Petrusev was 11-of-15 from the free throw line.

The Zags only took an eight-point lead into halftime. Throughout much of the first half, LMU did a better job at dictating the pace of play—even with Eli Scott sitting out the final five minutes of the first half. If not for a Corey Kispert three at the buzzer, Gonzaga would’ve walked down the tunnel with a slim lead of 35-30 instead of 38-30. LMU kept it close, rebounding hard and harassing Gonzaga into nine turnovers.

In the second half, it was all Gonzaga all the time. The Zags didn’t turn the ball over again until garbage time. Admon Gilder came out with authority, hitting threes and providing the necessary bench spark with 17 points. Corey Kispert found his stroke and the Zags were able to go on a 27-9 run to take a substantial lead, never looking back.

With LMU out of the way, the big circle on the calendar is coming this weekend: on the road against Saint Mary’s.