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January 5, 2004 Conference Notes No Comments

The Morning Dish – Monday, January 5th

Cardinal on Fire: No. 5 Stanford continued to torch opponents as the Cardinal carved up Washington, 85-72. Stanford shot nearly 60 percent to withstand every attempt by Washington to cut into the Cardinal’s lead. Senior forward Justin Davis led Stanford with 17 points and three other players reached double-figures. Junior guard and team superstar Josh Childress continued to work his way back from injuries by playing 13 minutes, scoring four points and grabbing five rebounds. For Washington, sophomore guard Nate Robinson led the Huskies with 16 points.

Zags Pound Out Another Win: No. 16 Gonzaga used its dominant size to destroy Montana 88-67. The Bulldogs cleaned up the glass all night, outrebounding Montana 40-19. Senior guard Cory Violette scored 21 points and grabbed nine rebounds to lead Gonzaga. Junior forward Ronny Turiaf supported Violette with 13 points and rebounds. Junior forward Kamarr Davis led Montana with 13 points but fouled out. Montana could not keep pace with Gonzaga’s muscle, committing 27 fouls and giving Gonzaga 43 free-throw attempts. The Bulldogs hit 33 of those free throws.

Knight Homecoming: A little more than 40 years ago, Texas Tech coach Bobby Knight graduated from Ohio State. Knight and the Red Raiders returned to Ohio State yesterday to teach the Buckeyes something about playing basketball. Senior guard Andre Emmett deserves a promotion for schooling the Buckeye kids. Emmett scored 27 points and grabbed 11 rebounds to lead Texas Tech to an 80-72 victory. Ohio State failed to find the shooting touch, making only 33 percent of shots from the field. Freshman guard Nick Dials played well for the Buckeyes, scoring 15 points before fouling out.

More Pac-10 Action: UCLA improved to 2-0 in conference play by beating Oregon 81-74. Junior forward Dijon Thompson and junior guard Janou Rubin each scored 13 points to lead a balanced Bruin attack that built a 22-point lead. But Oregon fought back behind senior forward Luke Jackson’s 28 points. Oregon ran out of steam down the stretch and made only one field goal in the final six minutes of the game. UCLA outworked the Ducks on the glass, grabbing 38 rebounds while Oregon managed only 24.

• Junior forward Jeff McMillan guided USC to a 91-82 victory over Oregon State with 10 points, 11 rebounds, five assists and three blocks. The Trojans fell behind by 13 points early in the game but rallied with a balanced attack. Five players reached double-figures, including freshman guard Lodrick Stewart who led the Trojans with 19 points. Another youngster, sophomore guard Chris Stephens, led Oregon State with 19 points. The Trojans used their interior presence to block 10 shots to frustrate Oregon State’s offensive attack.

• Senior guard Marcus Moore was tired of losing to Pac-10 competition. Washington State entered the contest against California on a 22-game losing streak in conference play. But Moore sparked a 9-2 rally in the second half to give the Cougars a 49-48 lead. Washington State then smothered California and held on to win 55-50. The Golden Bears set up a play in the final minute and only managed an air ball on the three-point attempt.

Ram Tough: The Rhode Island Rams opened Atlantic 10 conference play with a win over Fordham, 68-53. Sophomore guard Dawan Robinson had a game-high 24 points to power Rhode Island to a 11-3 record. He hit two key three-pointers to stymie Fordham’s attempt to come back in the second half. Senior forward Michael Haynes and sophomore forward Mushon Ya-akosi led Fordham with 15 points apiece, but they were the only players to reach double-digits in scoring. Both teams need to take free-throw reps, however, as they combined for 14-of-27 from the line.

Tonight’s Menu:

• No. 19 Texas and coach Rick Barnes return to Providence, where Barnes coached for six years. But the Friars will be out to earn national respect and a spot in the polls so the Longhorns must bring their best game to the East Coast. No. 13 Kansas is the only other ranked team in action, visiting Colorado for both teams’ Big XII opener. Lots of teams dive into conference play nationwide, including WAC upstart Rice at Louisiana Tech, Missouri Valley heavyweight Creighton at Bradley and the Futility Bowl between Alcorn State (1-7) at Prairie View (0-10).

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