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No. 23 Gonzaga holds on against Eastern Washington

Nov 12, 2011 - 7:21 AM Spokane, WA (Sports Network) - Robert Sacre scored 22 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead the 23rd-ranked Gonzaga Bulldogs to a 77-69 season-opening victory over the Eastern Washington Eagles.

Marquise Carter added 17 points, Elias Harris had 16 points and eight rebounds and Kevin Pangos rose from the bench to net 11 points for the Bulldogs (1-0), who have won 23 straight home openers.

Collin Chiverton scored a game-high 25 points for the Eagles (0-1), while Cliff Colimon added 17 points and eight assists.

Though the Eagles have dropped 24 straight to the Bulldogs, they fought tooth and nail Friday, nearly rendering Gonzaga's preseason ranking obsolete.

Colimon poured in 15 points and handed out six assists over the first 20 minutes of play, while Chiverton, a junior college transfer, went 4-of-6 from beyond the arc.

As a team, the Eagles shot 50 percent from the field during the first half, but the Bulldogs still held a 38-35 lead at the break thanks in part to a 12- of-19 effort from the charity stripe.

Sacre hit six first-half free throws and finished 14-of-18 from the foul throw line.

Carter also consistently worked his way to the line, hitting 12-of-18 free throws overall.

Still, Eastern Washington hung around, and took a 49-48 lead on Jordan Hickert's three pointer with 14:15 left to play.

In all, the Eagles held four leads after intermission, but Sacre's foul shot with 6:22 remaining put the Bulldogs on top 66-65.

It was a lead Gonzaga would not relinquish.

Game Notes

The Bulldogs last lost a home opener in 1988, when they fell to Boise State 73-65...They last lost to the Eagles on January 8, 1990.