PORTLAND – Johnathan Williams scored 21 points on 8 of 10 shooting as Gonzaga owned the second half en route to a 86-59 victory over Ohio State in the quarterfinals of the PK80 Invitational on Thursday at Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
Josh Perkins added 20 points for the 17th-ranked Bulldogs (4-0), including six 3-pointers. Perkins also pitched in on the defensive end with a pair of steals.
After a tight opening 10 minutes, the Zags started to pull away from the Buckeyes (4-1) by holding Ohio State scoreless over the final 7:48 of the first half.
After sitting most of the first half due to foul trouble, freshman wing Corey Kispert helped Gonzaga get out of the gates quick in the second half, scoring eight of his 10 points in a 90-second stretch.
C.J. Jackson and Jae-Sean Tate scored 12 points each for Ohio State.
Gonzaga will now face its toughest test of the young season, a showdown with No. 7 Florida at 8 p.m. Friday (ESPN2) in the Moda Center. The Gators opened the tournament with a 108-82 dismantling of Stanford.
In the other semifinal of the Motion Bracket, top-ranked Duke will take on Texas at 2:30 p.m. (ESPN).
Final – Gonzaga 86, Ohio State 59: After a tight opening 10 minutes, Gonzaga had its way for the final half hour to rout Ohio State.
Full recap and analysis coming shortly at spokesman.com/zags
3:52 – Gonzaga 76, Ohio State 55: Gonzaga extremely efficient on offense once again, shooting at a 55 percent clip from the field and 44 percent from range.
Johnathan Williams has also made his presence known in the paint, drawing charge calls on consecutive Ohio State possessions.
Williams has also scored a season-high 21 points on 8 of 10 shooting.
More or less cruise control time here for the Bulldogs as they’ll start to turn their attention to No. 7 Florida, which easily dismantled Stanford 108-87 in an earlier PK80 quarterfinal.
7:34 – Gonzaga 66, Ohio State 48: Perkins now up to a game-high 20 points for Gonzaga, which is a season-best for the senior guard.
Killian Tillie has also pulled down 11 rebounds for the Bulldogs and has one of the team’ws three blocks – Jacob Larsen has the other two.
10:28 – Gonzaga 63, Ohio State 42: Kispert has joined the double-figures club for the Bulldogs with 10 points – all of which have come in the second half.
Gonzaga has also cleaned it up on the boards as the game has progressed, outrebounding Ohio State 28-22.
14:54 – Gonzaga 52, Ohio State 38: After being in foul trouble most of the first half, Gonzaga’s Corey Kispert scored eight points in 90 seconds as the Bulldogs opened their biggest lead of the night.
Gonzaga 44, Ohio State 31: Josh Perkins connected on five 3-pointers for 15 first-half points as No. 17 Gonzaga leads Ohio State at halftime of the PK80 Invitational in Portland.
As good as the Bulldogs’ offense was at times, the defense might have been better. Gonzaga held Ohio State scoreless over the final 7:48 of the half. The Buckeyes finished the opening 20 minutes shooting just 39 percent from the field compared to Gonzaga’s 55.
The Zags also forced nine OSU turnovers.
Johnathan Williams is the only other Gonzaga player in double figures (11), while C.J. Jackson leads the Buckeyes with 10 points.
Halftime – Gonzaga 44, Ohio State 31: The Bulldogs hammered Ohio State in transition in the first half, scoring 11 points on eight Buckeye turnovers.
That doesn’t mean there haven’t been sloppy moments for the Zags though. They’ve committed five first-half turnovers after committing only three in the entire game against Utah State.
Defensively, Gonzaga had one of its best stretches of the young season to end the half, holding Ohio State scoreless for the final 7:48.
Perkins put an exclamation point on the opening 20 minutes with a deep 3-pointer, his fifth of the game for a team-best 15 points.
3:57 – Gonzaga 35, Ohio State 31: Both offenses are starting to cool off from their hot starts, while the defenses have tightened up.
One of the big differences so far has been the Bulldogs’ points off turnovers (9-1)
Scary moment for Perkins though as he takes a shot to his left eye while chasing down a loose ball. After taking a look at the replay, the refs kept the call as a personal foul.
7:48 – Gonzaga 33, Ohio State 29: Steady bench rotation from Mark Few and the Zags, as nine players have already seen action.
Ohio State, much like Utah State last week, is still getting good looks from range against the Gonzaga zone. Unfortunately for the Buckeyes, Perkins is also in the zone – hitting his fourth 3-pointer of the game to lead the Bulldogs with 12 points.
Williams also gets into double figures for the Bulldogs at 11 points.
Ohio State will play the rest of the half in the bonus.
11:59 – Gonzaga 21, Ohio State 18: The Buckeyes come out of their timeout with some tough interior defense, forcing a Gonzaga turnover.
Bulldogs shooting 66 percent from the floor and 3-point range, while Ohio State is hitting 55 and 60 percent respectively.
The Buckeyes are outrebounding Gonzaga 6-4 over the opening eight minutes, while both teams have turned the ball over only once.
12:55 – Gonzaga 21, Ohio State 16: Josh Perkins is on fire from deep, hitting all three of his 3-point attempts to pace Gonzaga with nine points.
Ohio State’s C.J. Jackson is also a perfect 3 for 3 from the field, including a pair of 3-pointers for a team-best eight points.
16:00 – Ohio State 11, Gonzaga 10: Both teams opened with 3-pointers, setting the tone for what is shaping up to be a shootout.
Johnathan Williams, who has struggled on offense early this season, scored five quick points for the Bulldogs.
Gonzaga was forced to go to the bench very early though, as freshman Corey Kistper picked up his second foul in the first three minutes. Zach Norvell Jr. takes his place.
Gonzaga announces starting five
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NCAA men’s basketball
At Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Portland
➤ Thursday, Nov. 23: Ohio State Buckeyes (4-0) at No. 17 Gonzaga Bulldogs (3-0), 9 p.m. PT TV: ESPN2 Online: Watch ESPN
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