Gonzaga did not want to make its first sweet sixteen since 2009. Okay, that's probably not true, but it sure seemed like it because the Zags had 21 turnovers and just 22 made field goals.
Arizona's defense, the nation's best according to KenPom, lived up to the hype. The Zags, one of the better offenses in the country, were hapless with the ball tonight.
It started out well, Przemek Karnowski scored first and the Zags held a 2-0 and then 4-2 lead. All downhill from there. Arizona built its lead to multiple possessions thanks to a string of missed shots and turnovers from Gonzaga. The fourth turnover in that span was the worst. Kevin Pangos lost the ball driving into the paint and landed awkwardly on his ankle. As the Wildcats ran a fast break to the other end, Pangos was down on the floor in pain.
Replays showed an ugly ankle turn. He was helped off the floor and into the locker room. Amazingly, he came back just a few minutes later.
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson scored eight straight points for Arizona as they built a lead that first doubled up the Zags, 22-11, then grew to 21 points. Gonzaga showed signs of life at the end of the half, going on a 12-4 run with no turnovers over the final four minutes.
Coming out of the break, Mark Few stressed the importance of taking care of the ball to sideline reporter Otis Livingston. He apparently didn't do a good enough job stressing it to his players, however, as they opened the half with two turnovers in the first minute.
Przemek Karnowski, 14 points and 10 rebounds, tried to keep the Zags in the game. His lay-up with 17:36 to play cut the lead to 11 points. The Zags would get no closer.
In fact, they'd only get farther and farther away. Arizona's lead peaked at 28 points with two and a half minutes left to play.
Gonzaga shot a surprisingly not awful 40.7%. However, the Zags turned the ball over on nearly 30% of their possessions. It was an ugly end to a somewhat quiet 29 win season.