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Gonzaga Basketball

Gonzaga will face San Francisco, Portland or LMU in WCC Tournament semifinals

Gonzaga’s Mark Few calls a play against Saint Mary’s on Saturday. GU will face San Francisco, Loyola Marymount or Portland in the WCC tournament semifinals March 11 at Orleans Arena in Las Vegas.  (By Tyler Tjomsland/The Spokesman-Review)

Gonzaga has known since the final buzzer sounded in Thursday’s victory over San Francisco that it was locked into the second seed for the upcoming West Coast Conference Tournament.

The 23rd-ranked Bulldogs (24-6, 14-2 WCC) also knew that USF, as the third seed, is a potential foe in the semifinals at 8:30 p.m. on March 11, at Orleans Arena in Las Vegas. GU learned Sunday morning that possible opponents also include No. 6 Portland or No. 7 Loyola Marymount, according to a conference release on tournament seeding and pairings.

Gonzaga brings an eight-game winning streak into the tournament, including a 70-57 road win over top-seeded Saint Mary’s in Saturday’s regular-season finale.

The Zags’ most likely will face Round 3 against the Dons, who dropped three of their last four to finish 22-9, 11-5 in conference. USF awaits the winner of Friday’s Portland/LMU contest in Saturday’s quarterfinals.

Portland, LMU and Pepperdine tied for sixth with 5-11 records. The Pilots won the tiebreaker by virtue of a win over No. 4 Santa Clara. LMU was awarded the seventh seed over the Waves due to a higher NET ranking.

No. 8 Pepperdine and No. 9 Pacific tip off the tourney Thursday.

Gonzaga swept the season series against San Francisco, Portland and Loyola Marymount. The Zags beat USF by five in Spokane and 18 Thursday at the Chase Center after leading by 29 points with 1:38 remaining.

The Zags handled the Pilots 96-64 in Spokane in early February and 86-65 in Portland in the rematch two weeks later. GU thumped LMU 92-58 in Spokane and pulled away in the second half for a 91-74 win in Los Angeles.

Former Gonzaga guard Dominick Harris scored 11 points for the Lions in the first meeting but missed the rematch in mid-February with a knee injury. Harris had 20 points in a 96-62 blowout win over San Diego on Thursday but didn’t play in Saturday’s loss to Portland.

Saint Mary’s (24-7, 15-1) could square off against Santa Clara, San Diego, Pepperdine or Pacific. The Broncos have the advantage of needing just one win in the quarterfinals to set up a third meeting with the Gaels.

The championship game is set for March 12 at 6 p.m. on ESPN.