By ADAM ZAGORIA
Gonzaga has been near the top of the AP rankings for much of Mark Few’s tenure as head coach, but entered Saturday’s game against No. 17 Kentucky at Rupp Arena unranked and without a Quad-1 victory this season.
The Bulldogs were 0-5 in Quad-1 games.
That all changed, though, when the Bulldogs stunned the No. 17 Wildcats, 89-85, before a capacity crowd at Rupp and joined the “Next Four Out,” per ESPN’s Joe Lunardi.
Kentucky (16-7, 6-4 SEC) has now lost three home games in a row for the first time since the 1966-67 team dropped three in a row at Memorial Coliseum.
Anton Watson put the Bulldogs (18-6, 8-2 WCC) up 86-82 with a driving layup from the wing before Ugonna Onyenso hit two free throws to cut it to 86-84 with 43 seconds left.
After a steal by Justin Edwards, Kentucky called a timeout.
Reed Sheppard threw an inbounds pass to Adou Thiero from the wing but Ben Gregg stole it right in front of the basket.
Gregg then went 1-of-2 from the foul line to push it to 87-84.
Antonio Reeves then made one free throw before intentionally missing the second but Gonzaga grabbed the rebound.
Nolan Nickman, the former Wildcat who transferred to Gonzaga, calmly knocked down two foul shots to make it 89-85.
Graham Ike went for 23 points for Gonzaga, which went 21-of-24 from the foul line. Hickman and Watson scored 17 apiece and Gregg had 12.
Sheppard led Kentucky with 21 points, Reeves scored 17 and Thiero 15. The Wildcats played without forward Tre Mitchell and guard DJ Wagner due to injuries.
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