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Gonzaga-Santa Clara difference makers: Drew Timme, Andrew Nembhard each score 20 points in resilient Santa Clara win

Drew Timme

The junior forward wouldn’t have any issues with seeing Santa Clara for a third time in the West Coast Conference Tournament. Timme, who scored 32 points in Gonzaga’s first matchup with the Broncos, scored 23 points in the second meeting, helping the Zags clinch their 27th WCC regular-season championship. It was the ninth 20-point game of Timme’s season but just the second in his past eight games. Timme, who shot 9 of 18 from the field, also grabbed nine rebounds and dished out three assists.


Three days after finishing with a career-high 14 assists at Pepperdine, Nembhard was on triple-double pace early in Saturday’s game. Gonzaga’s do-it-all point guard had 10 points, five assists and five rebounds by halftime and didn’t slow down in the second half, finishing with 21 points, eight assists and six rebounds. Nembhard made a season-high five 3-pointers and connected on a pair of 3s late in the second half that helped GU put the game out of reach.

Key moment

A 4-minute Santa Clara scoring drought in the first half helped give the Bulldogs a cushion they’d need after halftime. The Broncos didn’t score from the 5:55 mark to the 4:09 mark, allowing Gonzaga to unleash an 11-0 run and take a 38-22 lead. The run was pivotal because Santa Clara trimmed the deficit to 10 points at halftime and eventually closed it to six points in the second half. Such stretches have been common for Gonzaga, which entered Saturday’s game averaging 1.46 runs of 10-0 or greater.