Andrew Nembhard recorded 19 points and seven assists as top-ranked Gonzaga notched an 82-69 victory over Saint Mary’s on Tuesday night in Las Vegas to win the West Coast Conference tournament title for the 19th time in the past 24 seasons.
The victory all but assures the Bulldogs (26-3) will be the #1 overall seed in the upcoming NCAA Tournament. Saint Mary’s (25-7) was being touted as a possible #6 seed prior to losing to Gonzaga for the second time in three meetings this season.
Rasir Bolton tallied 18 points and Julian Strawther added 16 for the Bulldogs. Chet Holmgren had just eight points while collecting eight rebounds.
Logan Johnson scored 21 points for the Gaels, who played in the conference title game for the fifth time in seven seasons. Gonzaga outshot Saint Mary’s 57.7 percent to 47.4 percent from the field.
Northeast Conference final
Bryant is headed to the Division I NCAA Tournament for the first time after beating Wagner 70-43 in the title game in Smithfield, R.I.
The Bulldogs (22-9) made the Division II tournament seven times, reaching the final in 2005, before beginning the transition to Division I in 2008.
Peter Kiss scored 34 points to lead Bryant to the win after a long second-half delay caused by a fight in the stands. Raekwon Rogers paced the Seahawks (21-6) with 12 points.
ASUN Conference final
Atlantic Sun regular-season champion Jacksonville State earned its second NCAA Tournament berth after Bellarmine defeated rival Jacksonville 77-72 in Louisville, Ky.
Bellarmine is ineligible for the NCAA Tournament during its transition period from Division II to Division I. Jacksonville, which defeated Jacksonville State in a semifinal game, would have earned the conference’s automatic bid with a win in the title game.
CJ Fleming scored 27 points and went 11-for-11 from the foul line to lead the Knights (20-13), while Dylan Penn added 22 points. Jordan Davis scored 22 points for the Dolphins (21-10).
Summit League final
South Dakota State ran its winning streak to 21 games and sealed an NCAA Tournament bid with a 75-69 victory over North Dakota State in Sioux Falls, S.D.
The Bison (23-10) led 61-60 with 3:09 to play after Sam Griesel’s 3-pointer, but the Jackrabbits (30-4) scored the next five points and held on for the win.
Douglas Wilson led South Dakota State with 21 points and 11 rebounds. Griesel finished with 24 points, eight rebounds and five assists.
Colonial Athletic Association final
Delaware rallied in the final 2 1/2 minutes to beat UNC Wilmington 59-55 in the final at Washington, giving the Blue Hens their first NCAA Tournament appearance in eight years.
The Seahawks (23-9) went up 55-53 on Jaylen Sims’ jumper with 2:33 to play. Jyare Davis made 1 of 2 foul shots for the Blue Hens (22-12) on the next possession, then put Delaware up for good on a jumper with 1:03 left.
Davis and Sims each led their teams with 18 points.
Horizon League final
Trey Calvin’s 14-foot jumper with 10.5 seconds left put Wright State in front, and the Raiders pulled out a 72-71 victory over Northern Kentucky in the final at Indianapolis.
The Norse (20-12) led 57-41 with 11:47 to go before the Raiders (21-13) constructed their comeback.
Calvin scored 21 points to lead Wright State, which is headed to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2018. Marques Warrick put up a game-high 28 points for Northern Kentucky.