Mary’s Stuns Top-Ranked Gonzaga To Earn NCAA Berth

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Getty Image

COLBY 26, HUSSON 6: Carter Vicker had all of his four goals in the first half as Mules (2-2) opened a 15-3 lead by halftime and handled the Eagles (0-3) at Waterville.

Jordan Hunter had 12 points and 15 rebounds as second-seeded Saint Mary's stunned top-seeded and No. 1 ranked Gonzaga 60-47 in the WCC Tournament championship game on Tuesday at the Orleans Arena.

The Gaels held Gonzaga's leading scorer Rui Hachimura in check and limited the Zags (30-3) to 2-of-17 shooting from 3-point range to end the nation's longest winning streak at 21 games.

With 9:17 remaining, Gonzaga climbed within one but, from there, St. Mary's finished the night on an 18-6 run and sent the Bulldogs home without the WCC Tournament title for the first time since 2012. But, undeniably, Gonzaga is now at risk of slipping to a No. 2 seed because it's in the clubhouse with maybe six or seven teams capable of passing them with great performances in their power-conference tournaments.

Gonzaga, victor of the past six WCC titles, was expected to claim their seventh and be an NCAA Tournament No.1 seed but the loss could relegate their ranking.

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It was Boston's second victory over Sacramento in eight days, and the Celtics' fourth win in five games overall. He connected on six three pointers and had seven assists and four rebounds in 35 minutes on the court.

Saint Mary's played arguably its best game of the season at the best possible time. Temple closed the regular season with a quality victory over Central Florida. We were able to keep them out of transition and take care of the ball.

In a defeat that was extremely unexpected, the nation's top team in the polls has lost its conference tournament. This group's tough. They're resilient, we were 3-4 to start the year and a lot of people didn't think we were good. The Saint Mary's win doesn't help at all. UNC is 16-5 in Quadrant 1/Quadrant 2 opportunities; Gonzaga is 10-3. The good news is Belmont is at No. 45 in the NET ranking, which is higher than many other bubble teams. Both the Tigers (19-12, 9-9 ACC) and Wolfpack (21-10, 9-9) are hanging around the cut line in several mock brackets. The Red Storm will face DePaul, which had a respectable 7-11 mark in conference play.

Follow David Brandt on Twitter: www.twitter.com/davidbrandtAP.

Saint Mary's heard for weeks about the NCAA Tournament bubble.

St. Mary's Jordan Hunter, right, and Malik Fitts celebrate after their team defeated Gonzaga 60-47 in an NCAA college basketball game for the West Coast Conference men's tournament title, Tuesday, March 12, 2019, in Las Vegas.

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