WCC Championship: No. 18 Gonzaga v. Saint Mary's

WCC Championship: No. 18 Gonzaga v. Saint Mary's

WCC Championship: No. 18 Gonzaga v. Saint Mary's

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by Tim Lewis

KREM.com

Posted on March 8, 2010 at 1:16 PM

Updated Monday, Mar 8 at 1:24 PM

30 second game guide

Bring’em Out: WCC Tournament championship between No. 18/14 (AP/Coaches polls) Gonzaga 26-5 (12-2 WCC) and Saint Mary's 25-5 (11-3 WCC) at Orleans Arena on Monday at 6 p.m. on ESPN.

Watch for: A hard fought battle between two teams trying to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. If the Bulldogs don't win (I hope I'm not jinxing anything), they'll still get an at-large bid into the Big Dance. St. Mary's isn't sure thing for the tourney, so they'll put out all of their tricks to get past the Zags.

Fear: Beating a team three times in one season. Yes, I realize the Bulldogs usually have no problem taking down West Coast Conference opponents with ease three times a year (that's why they are playing in their 13th straight WCC Tournament championship), but the WCC is more balanced this year than in the past. The Gaels are a tough team with wins against Utah State, New Mexico State, and Oregon this season. They only lost to Gonzaga by seven in their first meeting in Moraga on January 14th.

Respect: Omar Samhan. I know a lot of Gonzaga fans want to punch my in the stomach for saying this (he doesn't have the best reputation among the GU faithful), but he is a good player who adds depth to the WCC. Samhan averages 21.3 points (tied for 13th in the country), 11.1 rebounds (11th in the country), and 2.9 blocks (14th in the country) per game. Obviously, Samhan is the leader of this year's Gaels team. They'll only go as far as he takes them.

Random Stuff: I mentioned Gonzaga's seven point win against St. Mary's on January 14th, but I didn't tell you about the Zags 19 point pounding of St. Mary's in Spokane on February 11th. The Gaels eased past Portland 69-55 in the WCC Tournament semifinals to make it to the championship against GU. Selection Sunday is this weekend! Find out who, when, and where Gonzaga will play in the NCAA Tournament only on KREM 2.

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