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Heytvelt, Gonzaga pile on another WCC tourney title

Mar 10, 2009 - 5:30 AM LAS VEGAS (Ticker) -- Josh Heytvelt scored 17 points and Matt Bouldin added 14 as No. 12 Gonzaga rolled to an 83-58 victory over Saint Mary's in Monday's championship game of the West Coast Conference.

Micah Downs had 12 points and 12 rebounds en route to being named the MVP for the Bulldogs (26-5), who collected their fifth tournament crown in the past six years and ninth in 11.

Beating the Gaels for the third time this season, Gonzaga secured its 11th straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament.

After failing to get out of the NCAA first round each of the past two years, the Bulldogs appear primed for a better showing, wrapping up a perfect showing in the WCC (16-0).

"When they put it all together on both ends, defensively and offensively, it's a great feeling and beautiful sight to see," Gonzaga coach Mark Few said.

The Bulldogs have also won their last nine games, getting on a roll after an tough 68-50 loss to then-No. 15 Memphis in downtown Spokane on February 7.

"We just stepped it up a level on both sides of the floor," Heytvelt said. "Everybody on the floor has done a great job playing defense, rebounding and that has gotten us to the level we're at."

In just his second game back following a broken right hand, top player Patrick Mills struggled for Saint Mary's (25-6), mustering five points on 2-of-16 shooting.

Mills, who broken his shooting hand in a 69-62 loss at Gonzaga on January 29, did not start but entered the contest with 80 seconds expired. That would be the highlight of the night for the Australian guard, who missed his first seven shots and was 1-of-10 in the first half as the Gaels trailed, 38-25, at the break.

The Bulldogs then put the game away after the break behind Heytvelt, who had 12 points in the closing 20 minutes. The senior forward finished 7-of-10 from the field and grabbed six rebounds.

Heytvelt had two dunks and a pair of layups on a 14-4 run that gave Gonzaga a 52-33 advantage with 14:59 remaining.

Saint Mary's would get not closer than 16 points thereafter.

Diamon Simpson scored 19 points and pulled down nine rebounds and Omar Samhan added 17 and nine for the Gaels, who shot 29 percent (19-of-66), including 3-of-17 on 3-pointers.








  • WEST COAST CONF CHAMPIONSHIP
    AT LAS VEGAS
    NCAA BB WEST COAST CONF CHAMPIONSHIP
    FINAL 1ST 2ND TOTAL
    --- --- -----
    SAINT MARYS CA 25 33 58
    GONZAGA (12) 38 45 83 FINAL

    Mar 9 10:59 PM


  • WEST COAST CONF CHAMPIONSHIP
    AT LAS VEGAS
    NCAA BB SAINT MARYS CA 25
    (12) GONZAGA 38 HALFTIME

    Mar 9 9:54 PM