Zags beat UNCG in first game of the tournament

Clyde Nash
March 16, 2018

The four seeded Gonzaga Bulldogs will take on the 13 seeded UNC Greensboro in the first round of the 2018 NCAA Tournament.

UNC Greensboro almost pulled off the massive upset over last year's national runner-up Gonzaga, but fell short in a 68-64 defeat. Barnett averages 13.1 points and 5.9 rebounds per game, both second on the team, and shoots 41.4 percent from 3-point range.

Expect this game to stay close through the first half, while Gonzaga is shaking off some rust, before opening up in the last 10 minutes.

This story will be updated.

Josh Perkins tied the game at 64 with a long jumper, and after Greensboro's Francis Alonso forced up a miss, Gonzaga got the rebound and worked the ball to Norvell, who spotted up from the right elbow and made the 3 for the lead.

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The Bulldogs came out on top after the two teams remained neck in neck throughout the game.

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The fourth-seeded Zags allowed a double-digit lead to evaporate but eventually held on to avoid being upset by No. 13 seed UNC-Greensboro in the first round of the NCAA tournament.

UNC Greensboro coach Wes Miller was a guard on the North Carolina men's basketball team that won the 2005 NCAA championship under coach Roy Williams.

But we'll put Xavier into the Sweet 16, where it will be knocked out by Gonzaga. After losing four key players from last year's Final Four team, the Zags were not expected to be a strong force this season.

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That's not to say that Gonzaga was ideal by any means. Marvin Smith got a good look at a possible game-tying 3 with 12 seconds left that went halfway down and out.

But when a team has been in these positions so many times before, it knows what it needs to do to survive and advance.

The Spartans may face an uphill battle, but don't count them out of the fight. Faced with a situation in which their season could have come to an end, Gonzaga responded with a good effort on the defensive end of the floor and some timely shot-making from two fearless guards in Perkins and Norvell.

"I'm glad I'm here with this guy, and we're not done yet".

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