for this game

Weaver, Washington hold on for big win at Gonzaga

Dec 6, 2007 - 8:00 AM SPOKANE, Washington (Ticker) -- Although Washington State and Gonzaga have faced each other 142 times, the Cougars came away with the biggest matchup.

Kyle Weaver scored seven of his 12 points inside the final eight minutes as sixth-ranked Washington State handed No. 19 Gonzaga a rare home loss with a 51-47 victory on Wednesday.

A series that dates back to the 1907-08 season, the matchup gained even more importance this season as both teams are ranked for the first time.

The Cougars (8-0), who are attempting to follow up on last season's surprising 26-win campaign, came out strong, grabbing a 28-19 lead at the half after shooting 54.5 percent (12-of-22).

However, actually pulling out a victory at the McCarthy Athletic Center proved to be a bit more of a task against the Bulldogs (7-2), who have only absorbed two losses in their previous 56 contests here.

Gonzaga, which had won seven in a row in the series until Washington State pulled out a 77-67 home win last season, rallied in the second half, closing within 42-41 on a 3-pointer by David Pendergraft with 5:18 remaining.

However, the Cougars did not allow the Bulldogs to get any closer, as Derrick Low split two free throws and Weaver had a layup for a 45-41 advantage with 3:56 to go.

After freshman Austin Daye sank two free throws 19 seconds later, Gonzaga appeared to have its best chance to get a defensive stop and potentially tie or go ahead.

Will Foster recorded one of his three blocks on a layup attempt by Washington State's Aron Baynes, but the ball deflected off the Bulldogs' Jeremy Pargo and out of bounds.

With the shot clock near the end, Low was forced to toss up a wild 3-point attempt off the inbounds pass. However, Robbie Cowgill kept the missed attempt out of Gonzaga's hands, knocking it to Weaver, who grabbed the ball in the air and scored a layup in one motion, making it 47-43 with 2:23 to play.

Two possessions later, the Bulldogs could not take advantage of an offensive rebound, and Taylor Rochestie later hit a 3-pointer, extending the Cougars' lead to 50-43 with 28 seconds left.

That was the only 3-pointer of the second half for Washington State, which has won its first eight games of the season for the first time since 1991-92.

Baynes had 13 points and Cowgill added 10 and 11 rebounds for the Cougars, who held a 43-30 advantage on the boards.

Pendergraft had 15 points and Micah Downs added 11 and eight rebounds for Gonzaga, which shot 25.9 percent (15-of-58) in losing at home for the first time since February 12 against Santa Clara.

The Bulldogs struggled to crack the Cougars' man-to-man defense, including leading scorer Matt Bouldin, who went without a point and shot 0-of-9 from the field. The sophomore entered the game averaging 14.4 points on 50.7 percent shooting.

Weaver, who shot 5-of-10 from the field and grabbed six rebounds, drew the assignment of guarding Bouldin.

The Bulldogs failed to score 50 points for the first time in nearly 11 years. It was their lowest point total since a 71-47 loss at Southern Utah on December 23, 1996.