Recap: Gonzaga vs. West Virginia
Pittsburgh, PA (Sports Network) - Robert Sacre had 14 points and six rebounds as Gonzaga routed West Virginia, 77-54, in a second round East Regional matchup on Thursday.
Gary Bell Jr. also scored 14 points while Kevin Pangos contributed 13 points on 5-of-7 shooting for the seventh-seeded Bulldogs (26-6), who will face Ohio State on Saturday. Elias Harris added 10 points in the victory.
"I was so proud of our guys. They came out and executed the game plan defensively, offensively, especially on the rebound aspect of it," Gonzaga head coach Mark Few said. "(We) beat a very good basketball team. I'm really happy for our guys to be able to move on."
Gary Browne scored a game-high 15 points for the Mountaineers (19-14), while Kevin Jones added 13 points and Deniz Kilicli donated 10 in the loss.
The game was close early, as Gonzaga led 14-10 with 12 1/2 minutes to play, but then the Bulldogs took control with a 13-0 run. Bell's three-pointer made it a 27-10 game with less than 8 1/2 minutes to go in the opening half.
West Virginia missed eight consecutive shots during the run before it was finally snapped by a Jones layup.
A Sacre layup with just under 3 1/2 minutes left pushed the Bulldogs' margin to 20 and they held a comfortable 40-22 advantage at the break.
The Bulldogs shot 50 percent from the floor in the first half. West Virginia by contrast, struggled from the floor, shooting just 23 percent (6-of-23).
Gonzaga was also on fire from three-point range, hitting 6-of-10 from beyond the arc, while the Mountaineers made just 1-of-10.
The second half was all Gonzaga, as the Bulldogs opened the second 20 minutes with a 17-9 burst to expand the lead to 57-31 -- their largest advantage of the night -- with 13 1/2 minutes to play.
The Mountaineers never got close the rest of the way.
Gonzaga continued its hot shooting in the second half, making 63 percent of its shots, while West Virginia was just 10-of-23 in the latter 20 minutes of play.
The loss for West Virginia snapped a streak of eight consecutive seasons with at least 20 wins.
"This was kind of a microcosm of our season," West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins said. "This is the worst defensive team I've ever had in 30 years. We don't get to help, we don't get to loose balls, we just don't do the things we've done for years."Game Notes
The Mountaineers appeared in their seventh NCAA Tournament in eight years and were in the 2010 Final Four...The Bulldogs earned an at-large invitation despite losing to St. Mary's in the West Coast Conference title game, while West Virginia also got an at-large big after finishing 9-9 in the ultra- competitive Big East...Gonzaga shot 56 percent from the floor, while the Mountaineers shot just 33 percent...The Bulldogs also hit 9-of-17 shots from three-point range, while West Virginia made just 3-of-17 from beyond the arc.