The eight seeded Gonzaga took care of business against the ninth seeded Oklahoma State Cowboys, defeating OSU by a score of 85 to 77 in the first round of the NCAA tournament (I refuse to refer to the round of 64 as the second round, that’s just idiotic.)
Gonzaga roared out to a 9-0 lead to start the game, which featured two 3-pointers by Gary Bell Jr. The largest lead that the Bulldogs were able to assemble was the 19:21 mark in the second half. Oklahoma State never had a lead throughout the course of the entire game.
Karnowkski finished with 10 rebounds as well to complete his double-double. Big man Sam Dower had an unexpected four assists that led the Bulldogs.
Gonzaga shot 50 percent from the field, while Oklahoma State only shot 40 percent. The Zags also hit 50 percent of his shots from beyond the 3-point line, while the ‘Pokes only connected on 20 percent of their 3-point baskets. Gonzaga’s hot shooting propelled them to victory, despite the fact that the Bulldogs had 15 turnovers to Oklahoma State’s 12.
There were 61 total fouls in the game, which made the game go well over two hours. The vast amount of fouls prevented either team from getting in any rhythm. Each team was greatly affected by this.
Player of the Game
Gary Bell Jr.
The Bulldogs signature perimeter defensive stopper was key to the Bulldogs success this afternoon. Bell scored 17 points on six of eight shooting (3-4 from 3) and marked up on Brown, Smart and Phil Forte III throughout the afternoon.
The Bulldogs survive and advance, and will meet one seeded Arizona in the round of 32. The Wildcats defeated Weber State 68-59 earlier today.
The game will be played at Viejas Arena on Sunday. Time is to be determined. Keep up with WestCoastConvo.com and our twitter handle (@westcoastconvo) for updates.