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Daye, Pargo help Gonzaga roll in season opener

Nov 12, 2007 - 1:57 AM SPOKANE, Washington (Ticker) -- Austin Daye could not have imagined a much better debut.

Daye scored 20 points and grabbed 10 rebounds and Jeremy Pargo added 17 and five as No. 14 Gonzaga cruised to a 77-54 triumph over Montana in its season opener Sunday.

Matt Bouldin had 13 points and Larry Gurganious chipped in 12 for the Bulldogs (1-0), who enter the season having won the last 10 West Coast Conference titles.

"I was totally impressed by our intensity today," Gonzaga coach Mark Few said. "I hadn't seen that in practice or in the scrimmage, but bits of it in the exhibition game. I was concerned coming into this game.

"We beat a really good team today that should go on to win their league and advance to the NCAA tournament. I thought our approach was terrific."

A highly touted freshman, Daye scored eight points in a 14-4 run in the first half which provided the Zags with a 33-14 advantage with five minutes left before intermission.

The 6-10 forward, who was playing in his first collegiate game, shot 8-of-13 from the floor and had three blocks.

"Austin Daye was a gamer," Few said. "He surely didn't look like that in practice."

The Zags took a 44-25 advantage into the break.

Montana began to chip away at its deficit early in the second half, but Gonzaga used an 11-0 run to open a 64-40 cushion with nine minutes left.

Pargo, who excited the Gonzaga crowd with a driving one-handed slam in the second half, went 8-of-13 from the field and dished out five assists.

"I thought Pargo had a good game," Few said. "He did a good job managing it out there for us."

The Bulldogs, who shot shot 53 percent (29-of-54), dominated the boards, outrebounding the Grizzles, 37-20.

Matt Martin scored 18 points to lead the way for Montana (1-1), which shot a dismal 31 percent (17-of-54).

Josh Heytvelt, who averaged 15.5 points last season before getting suspended following an embarrassing arrest in February, sat out the game.

The 6-11 Heytvelt has a stress fracture and will undergo surgery Monday to have two screws placed in his right ankle. He is expected to miss four to six weeks.

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    MONTANA 25 29 54
    GONZAGA (14) 44 33 77 FINAL

    Nov 11 6:00 PM

    MONTANA 25

    Nov 11 4:56 PM