National Basketball Association
St. Mary's 60, Gonzaga 47
When: 9:00 PM ET, Tuesday, March 12, 2019
Where: Orleans Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada
# Verne Harris, # Randy McCall, # David Hall
Junior guard Jordan Ford scored 17 points, and Saint Mary's earned an NCAA Tournament bid by upsetting top-ranked Gonzaga 60-47 in the West Coast Conference tournament title game on Tuesday night at Las Vegas.
Junior guard Tanner Krebs added 13 points as second-seeded Saint Mary's (22-11) defeated a No. 1-ranked team for the first time in nine chances. Senior center Jordan Hunter recorded 12 points and 15 rebounds as the Gaels snapped Gonzaga's 21-game winning streak.
The WCC tourney title is Saint Mary's first since 2012.
"I feel so sorry for all those guys who are on the bubble right now, but we're not," Gaels coach Randy Bennett said in a postgame interview on ESPN.
Junior forward Brandon Clarke had 16 points and eight rebounds for the top-seeded Bulldogs (30-3). Senior point guard Josh Perkins had 10 points on 4-of-14 shooting, and junior forward Rui Hachimura managed only nine points, scoring in single digits for the first time all season.
The 47 points were 20 points fewer than Gonzaga's previous season low, set against Pacific on Jan. 10. The Bulldogs entered the contest as the nation's leading scoring team at 90.2 points per game.
Gonzaga won the two regular-season meetings with Saint Mary's by an average of 31 points. One of the contests was a 94-46 dismantling of the Gaels, and the 48-point margin of defeat was the fourth worst in Saint Mary's program history and the only loss by 30 or more points Bennett's 18 seasons at the school.
Gonzaga had won the previous six WCC tournament crowns before being outplayed by the Gaels on Tuesday.
Saint Mary's shot 45.1 percent from the field and made 4 of 14 from 3-point range.
Gonzaga was worse at 37.5 percent and 2 of 17 from behind the arc.
Sophomore guard Tommy Kuhse's driving hoop gave the Gaels a 54-45 lead with 3:33 remaining, and there was no late response from the Bulldogs.
Kuhse was at it again with 2:07 left when he sank an acrobatic bank shot to again make it a nine-point margin. Ford added four free throws to wrap up the Gaels' ninth win in the past 11 games.
Sophomore forward Malik Fitts drained a 3-pointer to give Saint Mary's a 34-28 lead with 16:37 remaining. He knocked down another trey with 14:05 left to restore the six-point advantage.
The Bulldogs used a 7-2 run to move within 42-41 before Hunter converted a three-point play with 8:19 remaining. Ford buried a 3-pointer 39 seconds later to give the Gaels a 48-41 advantage.
Hunter's short hook shot gave Saint Mary's a 50-43 edge with 6:04 left.
Krebs scored 13 points on 5-of-7 shooting to help Saint Mary's take a 27-24 lead into halftime.
--Field Level Media
Top Game Performances
Jordan Ford 17
Brandon Clarke 16
Tommy Kuhse 3
Josh Perkins 4
Jordan Hunter 15
Brandon Clarke 8
Jordan Ford 6
||Free Throws Made
Brandon Clarke 4
Tanner Krebs 3
Josh Perkins 2
Jordan Hunter 1
Brandon Clarke 1
Team Stats Summary