Saint Mary's upsets No. 1 Gonzaga to win WCC title

Jose Verdugo
Marcha 15, 2019

The Gaels totally controlled the pace from the start and did a fantastic job of limiting Gonzaga's fast break opportunities.

Gonzaga were expected to dominate after winning 30 of their 33 games this season, but St Mary's, headed by Sydney centre Jordan Hunter and Hobart guard Tanner Krebs, never faltered.

St. Mary's Jock Perry, left, and Gonzaga's Josh Perkins scramble for the ball during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game for the West Coast Conference men's tournament title, Tuesday, March 12, 2019, in Las Vegas.

Even with the loss, Gonzaga could still end up as the No. 1 seed in the West Region on Selection Sunday.

Saint Mary's upsets No. 1 Gonzaga to win WCC title
Saint Mary's upsets No. 1 Gonzaga to win WCC title

Saint Mary's slowed down the game and had a defense-first approach, holding the Bulldogs to a low 37.5 shooting percentage (18-of-48). Saint Mary's did it with second-leading scorer Malik Fitts limited to less than a minute because of foul trouble.

"I'm just proud of how hard they played. We knew we could beat them". "We knew they were going to get their buckets, we just knew we needed to make it tough for them. These guys kept hanging, kept staying together, didn't get down". Not only that, but they are in line for a bit of history. Gonzaga shot 37.5 percent of from the field, and Bennett knew that getting an off shooting night was the flawless complement to his gameplan.

"We were told we would need to pull off a miracle if we wanted to win", said Saint Mary's senior center Jordan Hunter, whose team punched its ticket to the NCAA Tournament after being on the bubble fringe at best. Mark Few is one of the best coaches in the country and sure to address the issue in practice between now and the NCAA Tournament, but there's no doubt this performance is not what Gonzaga fans wanted to see at a time when you'd like to see a championship contender playing its best basketball.

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