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O'Leary leads the way as St. Mary's crushes Portland

Feb 3, 2008 - 6:26 AM MORAGA, California (Ticker) -- Ian O'Leary and No. 20 St. Mary's rebounded from a bad loss in a big way.

O'Leary scored a season-high 20 points and Omar Samhan added 18 as the Gaels cruised to an 86-49 victory over Portland on Saturday in a West Coast Conference contest.

Diamon Simpson scored 13 points and grabbed 15 rebounds for the Gaels, who hit 10 3-pointers and had four players in double figures en route to their 12th straight home win.

St. Mary's (18-3, 5-1 WCC), which had not been ranked since 1989, will probably not be staying in the rankings despite this win. That is because the Gaels suffered a 63-55 setback at the hands of San Diego on Monday - the same day they entered the top 25.

That loss snapped a five-game winning streak, but O'Leary helped them get back on track with their 11th win the last 13 meetings with Portland.

The junior swingman shot 8-of-9 from the floor, and made up for a sub-par performance from star freshman Patrick Mills. Mills, who leads the team at 14.8 points per game, scored just eight on 3-of-7 shooting.

Instead, O'Leary took control as he scored 10 points as the Gaels opened the game on a 16-5 run and never looked back.

St. Mary's now prepares for a home showdown with conference-leading Gonzaga (17-5, 6-0) on Monday. The Bulldogs squeaked by Santa Clara, 87-82, in double overtime on Saturday.

The Gaels, who shot 53 percent (34-of-64) from the field, led by 19 at the break. It opened the second half on an 18-8 run and expanded the lead to as many as 36 at 71-35 with 8:18 left in the second half.

Nik Raivio scored 18 points for the Pilots (7-15, 1-5), who have not beaten a ranked opponent since 1981-82. The other Portland player in double figures was Sherrad Watson, who scored 11.

Portland, which has lost five of six, shot just 37 percent (19-of-51) and was outrebounded, 43-27.

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    PORTLAND 19 30 49
    SAINT MARYS CA (20) 38 48 86 FINAL

    Feb 2 11:48 PM


    Feb 2 10:46 PM