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Friday December 3rd, 2021 5:31AM

Perfect Zags: No. 1 Gonzaga stays unbeaten, tops LMU 86-69

By The Associated Press
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SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Corey Kispert made six 3-pointers and finished with 24 points, and No. 1 Gonzaga remained the only unbeaten in the country with a 86-69 win over Loyola Marymount on Saturday night.

The Bulldogs (24-0, 15-0 WCC) won their 51st straight home game to set a school record and finished off a perfect regular season. Gonzaga has won 28 straight games dating to last season and is the first team to finish the regular season unbeaten since Kentucky in 2014-15.

The Bulldogs are the only remaining unbeaten in Division I after No. 2 Baylor lost at Kansas earlier Saturday. Gonzaga now gets a lengthy break before the West Coast Conference tournament begins.

Gonzaga had five players finish in double figures. Drew Timme scored16 points, Joel Ayayi 13, Jalen Suggs 12 and Anton Watson 11.

Eli Scott had 20 points and 11 rebounds to lead Loyola Marymount (12-8, 7-5), and Mattias Markusson added 19 points and 10 rebounds.

Kispert rediscovered his shooting touch from deep that had been a bit off of late. Kispert was 6 of 20 on 3-pointers during a five-game span earlier this month. But he hit 3 of 8 in the Bulldogs win over Santa Clara on Thursday and was even better in likely his final home game at The Kennel.

Kispert made 6 of 10 shots from deep against the Lions, and the Bulldogs shot 53% from behind the arc.

For the second straight game, the Bulldogs were pushed early. Loyola Marymount led by as many as five points midway through the first half before Gonzaga closed the half on a 12-3 run to take a 40-30 lead at the break.

The Lions saw the lead evaporate after Keli Leaupepe picked up his third foul with 5:59 left and LMU leading 23-22. Gonzaga outscored LMU 63-47 over the final 26 minutes.

THE TAKEAWAY

Loyola Marymount: The Lions needed to be perfect to hang around with the Bulldogs, but were far too sloppy. LMU committed 19 turnovers, leading to 29 points for Gonzaga. LMU did well using its size to bully the Bulldogs on the interior, but were careless with the ball.

Gonzaga: The Bulldogs won their 21st straight game by double-digits as the No. 1 team in the AP Top 25. That sets a record for consecutive double-digit wins by a No. 1 team, topping the 20-game streak of UCLA during the 1971-72 season.

UP NEXT

Loyola Marymount: The Lions will play in the WCC tournament next week.

Gonzaga: The Bulldogs will be the No. 1 seed in the WCC tournament and have a bye to the semifinals.

___

More AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/College-basketball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Basketball, College Sports, AP Sports - Men's College Basketball
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