Baylor Bears guard Langston Love (13) and forward Caleb Lohner (33) celebrate after Baylor defeated the Gonzaga Bulldogs during the second half of a college basketball game on Friday, Dec. 2, 2022, at the Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls, S.D. Baylor won the game 64-63. (Tyler Tjomsland/The Spokesman-Review)
SIOUX FALLS, SD – Despite a turnover plagued night that was coupled by poor shooting, Gonzaga found itself up by seven points with under two minutes remaining.
The Bulldogs couldn’t close out the win.
Baylor’s Jalen Bridges made a pair of free throws with 16 seconds left to beat Gonzaga 64-63 on Friday at the Peacock Classic in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
The No. 14 Bulldogs (5-3) committed 18 turnovers and shot 36% from the field, yet the Zags seemed poised to come away with a win after Malachi Smith scored a dunk with 1:41 remaining.
Adam Flagler responded for the No. 6 Bears (6-2), making a pair of 3-pointers to bring the score within a point.
That’s when the mistakes turned insurmountable for Gonzaga.
The Bulldogs turned the ball over on a shot clock infraction with 34 seconds remaining. Flagler missed a 3-pointer on the other end, but Drew Timme was whistled for his fifth foul, sending Bridges to the free throw line to make the go-ahead basket.
Out of a timeout Rasir Bolton tried to squeeze a pass to Nolan Hickman in the backcourt, which was tipped by a Baylor defender and went out of bounds off of Hickman with six seconds left.
Gonzaga forced a Baylor turnover to get the ball back with four seconds on the clock, but Bolton’s diving layup attempt missed off the top of the back board.
Gonzaga should bounce back from the sluggish start of the season, with only one more ranked opponent on its nonconference schedule – a Dec. 17 date with Alabama.
The Bulldogs will host Kent State on Monday at 6 p.m.
20:00 – GU 0, BU 0: Baylor wins the tip and we’re underway at the Sanford Pavilion.
17:50 – GU 3, BU 0: Baylor gets the first basket to go after a minute and a half of action, but Strawther answers with a 3-pointer on the other end for the Bulldogs.
15:40 – BU 8, GU 3: Baylor takes a 6-0 run into the first media timeout, as the Bulldogs start just 1 of 5 from the field.
14:23 – BU 12, GU 5: Strawther makes a pair of free throws, but the Zags still have only made one shot from the field.
11:17 – BU 19, GU 12: Gregg makes a spark off the bench for the Zags to cut into the Bears lead at the U12 media timeout.
Gregg and Strawther lead with five points apiece, as Gonzaga is 4 of 14 from the field. Timme is 0 of 2 and yet to score.
Different story for the Bears, which start 9 of 16. Baylor has scored 16 points in the paint to Gonzaga’s 2.
9:53 – BU 19, GU 18: Watson makes 1 of 2 free throws to extend the Zags run to nine points and close the gap.
7:26 – BU 25, GU 18: George makes a pair of 3-pointers to extend Baylor’s lead at the U8 media timeout.
Timme is yet to score, 0 of 2 from the field. George leads all scorers with eight points.
1:58 – BU 34, GU 27: Zags playing a sloppy half, but keeping it close at the U4 media timeout.
Zags have 10 turnovers and being outscored in the paint 24-10.
Gonzaga has been outplayed by Baylor, but managed to cut into the Bears lead to trail 38-33 at halftime of the Peacock Classic.
Baylor led by as many as 12 points, shooting 42.1% from the field and making 4 of 15 3-pointers. The Bears thrived in the paint, outscoring the Bulldogs 24-20 on inside shots.
Both teams had turnover trouble. Gonzaga committed 11 to Baylor’s 7.
The Zags shot just 37% in the half and made 4 of 10 3s. Gonzaga is led by Malachi Smith’s 11 points, while Julian Strawther, Anton Watson, Rasir Bolton and Ben Gregg each have five apiece.
Drew Timme has been held in check with two points – both on free throws – and four rebounds.
Keyonte George leads the Bears with 14 points and is 3 of 6 on 3-pointers.
19:13 – BU 38, GU 33: Zags start the first half where they left off – with a turnover. Watson’s pass to Timme goes out of bounds for GU’s 12 TO of the game.
16:18 – BU 40, GU 39: Strawther makes a 3 and Watson slams home a dunk to cut the Bears lead to one.
Baylor 1 of 6 from the field to start the second half. Gonzaga hasn’t led since the 18:21 mark in the first half.
14:46 – BU 42, GU 41: Zags momentarily take the lead, but the Bears get it back on a jumper from Flagler. Going back-and-forth into the U16 media timeout.
12:30 – BU 46, GU 43: Timme goes down hard, tripping over a Baylor player that was knocked to the floor going for a rebound.
Was slow to get up on the play, but appears to be fine.
11:01 – GU 46, BU 46: Bolton ties the score with a 3-pointer and the Zags get possession at the other end, with a chance to take the lead.
7:47 – GU 50, BU 48: Sallis gets a runner to go and give the Zags the lead at the U8 media timeout.
Baylor shooting 30% in the second half and are 0 of 5 on 3-pointers. Gonzaga’s lead comes in large part to a 14-5 advantage in offensive rebounds. The Zags have 14 second chance points.
3:51 – GU 57, BU 56: Watson gives the Zags the lead on a jumper and Smith will shoot a pair of free throws when play resumes after the U4 media timeout.
1:32 – GU 63, BU 59: Smith dunks it to give the Zags a 7-point lead, but Flagler makes a 3 on the other end and the Bears call for a timeout.
0:32 – GU 63: BU 62: Flagler makes a 3-pointer and the Zags turn it over on the other end.
0:16 – BU 64, GU 63: Timme is called for his fifth foul and Bridges makes both free throws for the Bears. Zags can hold for last shot.
0:06 – BU 64, GU 63: Bolton’s pass goes off Hickman for a costly turnover. Zags will now need to foul.
0:00 – BU 64, GU 63: Bolton drives to the hoop and throws up a prayer layup that misses at the buzzer. Baylor holds on to win in South Dakota.
There won’t be nearly as much on the line for Gonzaga and Baylor tonight as the last time the two teams met, but its never too late for an old-fashioned revenge story.
The No. 14 Bulldogs (5-2) take on the No. 6 Bears (5-2) at 5 p.m., a rematch of the 2021 NCAA Championship, at the Peacock Classic in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The game will be aired exclusively on Peacock, NBC’s streaming platform. The Peacock app is available on smart TVs and streaming devices.
The Bears will be hungry for a win, after a 96-70 blowout loss to Marquette on Tuesday during the Big 12/Big East Challenge. Like Gonzaga, Baylor has been up-and-down in a difficult nonconference schedule, beating No. 21 UCLA 80-75 and losing to No. 3 Virginia 86-79 at the Continental Tire Main Event.
Gonzaga is coming off a 88-84 win over Xavier at the Phil Knight Legacy tournament, where the Zags were handled by No. 5 Purdue 84-66.
Tonight’s result will weight on Monday’s AP Top 25 rankings, which have seen a shakeup since the preseason, with six teams dropping out of the top 10.
Gonzaga holds a 5-1 all-time series lead over Baylor, though the Bears lone win is the most crushing in Zags history.
The Bears steamrolled Gonzaga in the 2021 NCAA Championship game 86-70, derailing the Bulldogs hopes of an undefeated season and the school’s first title at the same time.
Gonzaga guard Andrew Nembhard is fouled by Baylor guard Mark Vital (11) during the second half of the championship game in the men’s Final Four NCAA college basketball tournament, Monday, April 5, 2021, at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. (Michael Conroy/Associated Press)
More on the Zags
Local journalism is essential.
Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.
Follow along with the Zags
Subscribe to our Gonzaga Basketball newsletter to stay up with the latest news.