January 5, 2013
A Bucking Bronco?
What is Zag Nation to expect against a surprising upstart Santa Clara team? Will they come out and play like the team who were down only 2 to the number 1 team in Cameron Indoor Stadium, or will we see the team that lost to 5-8 UCSB?
As this is the biggest game of the season for the Broncos (yes even bigger than Duke), Gonzaga should expect to see Santa Clara at their best. Marc Trasolini and Kevin Foster have been on fire for the Broncos and both are capable of taking over a game.
Foster has been playing at a high level this year and is filling up the stat sheet. He is not only a threat on the offense, where he is shooting 40%, but he is also averaging 3 steals a game on the defensive end. Foster will most likely be matched up against Hart, where Coach Few will hope to contain him by using Hart's physical style of defense. This will also force Foster to work on defense due to Hart's high motor and ability to find loose balls. Don't be surprised however to see Few try and match Foster with Edi or Bell's athleticism.
Trasolini has made a Adrian Peterson type of recovery from his ACL tear last year and is arguably having a better year than Foster. Marc Trasolini is averaging 7.8 rebounds a game, while shooting 54% and 37% from 3-point land. The fifth year Senior has opened the game up for his team and given Junior Evan Roquemore another option to pass to, which has led to Roquemore being 15th in the nation for Assists Per Game.
Gonzaga will catch a break as the schools dorms don't officially open until Sunday. Unfortunately the game is already packed as coach Kerry Keating has taken a page out of T. Boone Pickens book (the billionare who bought 4,000 tickets for the Gonzaga/Ok State game) and is footing the bill for up to $100 per room so students who live on campus can spend Saturday night in a local hotel.
Gonzaga is used to the crazy atmosphere and should be able to use their size to control the game. Expect the game to be close until the end when Gonzaga will pull away and win by 10.