Gonzaga Denies Cinderella South Carolina, Advances to National Title

(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)


GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Gonzaga Bulldogs hold off the resurgent South Carolina Gamecocks to advance to the national championship with a 77-73 win on Saturday night. Gonzaga took a nine point lead into halftime, but the margin didn't quell the efforts of a reinvigorated South Carolina squad -- the Gamecocks tied the game at 65 with 7:39 remaining in regulation.

The teams traded blows until the final moments of the game when USC's Sindarius Thornwell intentionally missed a free throw, only to have it recovered by the Zags. Moments later Killian Tillie ensured a Gonzaga victory at the charity stripe. 

Despite having just five turnovers to Gonzaga's 12, Frank Martin's USC team just couldn't find the offense they needed to get the job done. PJ Dozier led all Gamecocks in scoring with 17 on the night. Thornwell scored 15, falling 11 points shy of his 26 point performance against the Florida Gators in the Elite 8.

Undisputed leader on the floor for Gonzaga Nigel Williams-Goss finished with 23 points, five rebounds and six assists on the night. Williams-Goss also had 23 points in the Elite 8 against Xavier. Three other Bulldogs reached double-figures in scoring -- Przemek Karnowski (13), Jordan Mathews (12), and Zach Collins (14) who came in off the bench. 

Next Up

Gonzaga will face the winner of North Carolina-Oregon on Monday, April 3 in the 2017 national championship game.