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Recap and highlights: Killian Tillie shines as top-seeded Gonzaga routs San Francisco in WCC Tournament semifinals

UPDATED: Mon., March 5, 2018

Killian Tillie scored a game-high 26 points on 10-of-11 shooting to lead top-seeded Gonzaga to an 88-60 rout of No. 5-seed San Francisco in the West Coast Conference Tournament semifinals on Monday at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas.

Tillie, who turned 20 on Monday, made all five of his 3-point attempts and finished one point away from tying his career high.

Johnathan Williams added 10 points and 10 rebounds for his second double-double of the tournament for the Bulldogs (29-4).

Other Gonzaga players in double figures scoring include Rui Hachimura (17) and Zach Norvell Jr. (14).

The Bulldogs made their first six shots of the game, leading to a 48-27 advantage at the half.

The Zags ended the game shooting 53.3 percent from the floor and 46.2 percent from deep, while holding the Dons (18-15) to 36.1 percent overall and 21.7 percent from 3-point range.

GU also forced 13 turnovers while committing only nine of its own.

Nate Renfro led USF with 15 points. He was the only Dons player in double figures.

Gonzaga advances to its 21st straight WCC Tournament title game (6 p.m. Tuesday on ESPN), where it will face BYU.

Second half

Final – Gonzaga 88, San Francisco 60: Phenomenal showing from Gonzaga. The Bulldogs have been in control of this one from the start, and should carry some good momentum into tomorrow’s title game.

Can’t say enough about the play of Killian Tillie (26 points, 10-11 shooting, 5-5 from 3). Williams also has a double-double of 10 points and 10 boards.

Sharp shooting and tough defense get the job done here in the semifinals for GU.

3:50 – Gonzaga 83, San Francisco 53: Much-deserved early night for Killian Tillie. Looks like he’s going to finish with 26 points.

Next up for GU will be the WCC Tournament title game against either BYU or Saint Mary’s. That game is coming up next and should start right on time – always an uncertainty in tournament play.

Nice moment there for Jones as he gets a bucket to fall while being fouled. That play gets the bench off their feet.

7:09 – Gonzaga 75, San Francisco 51: Stop us if you’ve heard this tonight, but Killian Tillie is on fire.

He buries another triple, his fifth of the game, and is up to 26 points to lead the way. Not a bad birthday gift to give himself.

Zags coach mark Few starting to get the reserves ready as Jeremy Jones checks into the game for the first time. Would expect to see the likes of Jesse Wade, Jacob Larsen and other shortly as well.

11:54 – Gonzaga 65, San Francisco 42: Bulldogs taking their foot off the pedal a touch here as San Francisco gets a couple buckets too fall, but the lead is still safely above 20 points.

Tillie now at 18 points on a perfect 8-of-8 shooting. Absolute exhibition for the sophomore.

Zags have also forced the Dons into 11 turnovers, while committing just seven themselves.

Williams becomes the four GU player into double figures with 10 points. He also have eight rebounds, nearing yet another double-double.

15:57 – Gonzaga 59, San Francisco 34: Gonzaga not looking a step slower coming out of the half, as Tillie gets right back to action with a powerful take in the paint, followed by buckets from Williams.

Melson also knocks down his second 3-pointer of the night.

Best example of how the night is going for the Dons is a air ball from 16 feet out by Chase Foster that sends the game to a media timeout.

First half

Halftime – Gonzaga 48, San Francisco 27: Not much to complain about in the opening 20 minutes if you’re a Gonzaga fan.

Tillie with another 3-pointer as he finishes the half with 14. Norvell (14) and Hachimura (11) also in double figures.

Zags shoot the lights out in the first half (64.3 percent overall, 57.1 percent 3-point range), while keeping the clamps tight on defense. USF has nine turnovers to GU’s five so far.

Frankie Ferrari leading the way for USF with nin points.

Gonzaga well on its way to another berth in the WCC Tournament title game.

3:15 – Gonzaga 45, San Francisco 23: Norvell heating up from deep as he’s up to 14 points, including four 3-pointers.

Hachimura also into double figures with 11 points.

GU shooting an insane 70.8 percent from the floor and 63.6 from deep. Not much you can do if you’re USF in a game like this.

7:53 – Gonzaga 34, San Francisco 17: Gonzaga just having fun now. Perkins grabs a steal and feeds Hachimura who emphatically throws down a one-handed slam while getting fouled.

Rui up to nine points off the bench, as the USF bigs aren’t coming close to stopping the GU forwards. That’s a 9-0 run from Gonzaga

Zags have also forced four turnovers so far, including three steals from Perkins.

10:44 – Gonzaga 25, San Francisco 17: It’s not just the starters that have found the scoring touch for the Zags, as Rui Hachimura comes off the bench and drains a 17 footer for his first bucket. That’s followed by by yet another triple from Tillie, who is the first player into double figures with 11 points.

This is as impressive of an offensive start as we’ve seen this season from the Zags, proven by another dunk from Williams.

San Francisco quietly having a good offensive start as well though, as highlighted by a huge alley-oop from Jordan Ratinho to Nate Renfro. That bucket is immediately answered by a Perkins jumper as the teams are just trading buckets at this point.

15:27 – Gonzaga 16, San Francisco 9: Dream start for Gonzaga, especially Killian Tillie. The Big man gets an and-one for GU’s first bucket, followed by a nice hook shot in the lane.

Meanwhile on the other end of the court, Gonzaga forces a pair of turnovers, which turn into five Bulldogs points with a Johnathan Williams bucket and Zach Norvell 3-pointer.

Tillie also adds a triple on a nice dish from Josh Perkins. He’s up to eight quick points.

Gonzaga’s first miss of the game comes on a deep 3-point shot from Silas Melson at the end of the shot clock. Not too bad considering the ice-cold start GU had in its quarterfinal win over Loyola Marymount on Saturday.

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Blanchette: Vegas has played host to plenty of memorable WCC tournament moments for Gonzaga

Spokesman-Review columnist John Blanchette takes a look at GU's all-time starting five at the WCC Tournament in Las Vegas. (SR)
Spokesman-Review columnist John Blanchette takes a look at GU's all-time starting five at the WCC Tournament in Las Vegas. (SR)

LAS VEGAS – In a city that can make a 24-hour stay feel like a lifetime, a decade is an epoch.

And epochs demand historical record-keeping.

The marriage of the West Coast Conference tournament and Las Vegas turns 10 this week, an anniversary of such happy construct that it’s hard to remember the Pliocene days when the event was played on an assortment of rotating home courts – the road inevitably doubling back to Santa Clara, it seemed, and later San Diego. … READ MORE »

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