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Three things to know about Gonzaga, Ohio State's next NCAA tournament opponent

Three things to know about Gonzaga, Ohio State's next NCAA tournament opponent”

The first day of the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament almost got its first big upset on Thursday afternoon, when No. 4 Gonzaga barely got past No. 13 UNC Greensboro to open the day in Boise.

Johnathan Williams led GU with 19 points and 13 rebounds for his 15th double-double of the season.

The Bulldogs, a No. 4 seed, were tied at 64 with 13th-seeded North Carolina-Greensboro and struggled to put away the game from the free-throw line, but Gonzaga avoided the upset, winning 68-64.

The Zags dominated at the WCC Tournament in Las Vegas with three wins by an average of 20.7 points, with sophomore forward Killian Tillie averaging 24.0 points on a remarkable 77.8 percent shooting to win tournament MVP honors. Gonzaga led 32-23 at halftime after the Spartans missed the first 13 3-pointers they attempted.

But Gonzaga finished with the game's final six points - and a new name on its ever-growing list of playmakers.

No. 4 Gonzaga looks to return to the national championship game after coming up short in 2017.

Four players are averaging at least 8.5 points per game for UNC Greensboro, they are Francis Alonso (15.6), Marvin Smith (12.3), James Dickey (8.9) and Isaiah Miller (8.5). The Spartans fought back and held a brief lead before a Josh Perkins long 2-pointer tied it at 64-64 with 56 seconds remaining.

Gonzaga moves to the second round for the 10th straight year and will face either No. 5 Ohio State or No. 12 South Dakota State on Saturday. UNC Greensboro vs Gonzaga tv channel is on TNT.



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