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LMU @ Gonzaga Preview

Seeking revenge for a couple of different reasons on both sides...

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

It’s time for revenge for Loyola Marymount’s upset victory in the Kennel to snap Gonzaga’s 75-game home winning streak last year but also revenge for a former Zag. Dominick Harris played his first two seasons with Gonzaga but is now a Lion and has done a fantastic job in his first season. He started the season coming off the bench mostly but has now moved into the starting lineup permanently after proving he’s their go-to scorer. It would’ve have been real nice to still have Harris on the Gonzaga roster this season with all the depth issues but it’s a been a much better opportunity for him to thrive in LA.

Loyola Marymount’s record -

10-11, 3-4 (W vs Westcliff, L vs Yale, W vs Jackson State, L vs Stephen F. Austin, L vs Oakland, W vs Florida International, W vs UTEP, W vs Central Arkansas, L @ Nevada, W vs UNLV, L vs UC Santa Barbara, W vs Detroit Mercy, L vs #16 Colorado State, L vs Tarleton State, L vs Santa Clara, L vs Saint Mary’s, W vs Pacific, L @ USF, W @ Pepperdine, W vs Portland, L @ Saint Mary’s)

Key stats -

73.6 PPG

69.5 points allowed

44.5 FG%

36.0 3P%

73.7 FT%

36.4 RPG

12.0 APG

3.9 SPG

2.6 BPG

11.3 TO

KenPom rankings -

#148 overall

108.4 adjusted offensive efficiency (#130)

107.0 adjusted defensive efficiency (#199)

Key player to watch for -

Dominick Harris (junior, guard) - 14.7 PPG on 42.6 FG% and 43.3 3PT% (best in the WCC, 15th in the country), 3.4 RPG

Gonzaga misses Harris but it’s all business now against the former Zag. He paces the Lions in minutes (29.2 MPG) and has scored 20+ points in six games this season. Most remember his playing style but here’s a quick refresher.

The former four-star recruit is a true scoring guard who can do it all three levels. He has a tight handle to go along with his quick speed into the lane, has a creative layup package, and gets his accurate floater off quickly. Harris’ biggest strength comes from his three-point shooting (6.4 attempts per game this season). Just an all-around scoring threat from all over the floor.

His small size/frame for his position is a problem when scouting him for the next level and Nolan Hickman definitely is a bigger guard than him. I look forward to most definitely the offensive back-and-forth’s these two will have but who can win on the defensive end between the two.

Gonzaga ranks #1 in the WCC with 41.4 RPG and #2 with 12.0 ORPG but LMU is right behind at #3 in the league in offensive rebounding percentage (30.1%) according to KenPom. This is where the game will be decided, who can win on the glass. Box out the 6’8” Alex Merkviladze as well as the 7’1” Lars Thiemann and the Zags should be fine.

I can’t believe he’s still there but Keli Leaupepe (9.9 PPG on 42.4 FG%, 5.3 RPG, 1.3 APG) is in his fifth season with LMU and is still someone to be worried about. He has the most experience with playing in the Kennel and is extremely familiar with the Zags.

Loyola Marymount is back in Spokane for a late start at 8 PM PT on ESPN tonight. It’s going to be a long night so have your coffee or energy drink ready to go.

Arden Cravalho is a Gonzaga University graduate from the Bay Area... Follow him on Twitter @a_cravalho