Gonzaga vs. USC score: Live 2021 NCAA Tournament updates, Elite Eight bracket, highlights, live ...

For the second time in the last four NCAA Tournaments, Gonzaga is headed to the Final Four. The No. 1 overall seed Bulldogs improved to 30-0 in a Tuesday night shellacking of No. 6 seed USC 85-66 and are now just two victories away from becoming the first undefeated national champion since Indiana in 1976.

Playing USC was supposed to provide Gonzaga's prolific offense with one of its toughest tests of the season, as the Trojans entered the game as the best 2-point shooting defense in country. The Bulldogs quickly put that notion to rest, however, and finished shooting 50% from the floor.

The victory is Gonzaga's 27th straight win by double-digits, and it was never truly in doubt. Gonzaga jumped out to a 7-0 lead, never trailed in the game and never led by less than 16 in the second half. Drew Timme led the Zags with 23 points, while Corey Kispert and Jalen Suggs contributed 18 each.

The first half featured a scary moment, as referee Bert Smith collapsed during play. After a few moments, Smith alert and was seen sitting up as he was carted off the court. When play resumed, Gonzaga opened up a 36-15 lead before USC clawed back to cut it to 36-23. But the Bulldogs closed the half by making their final three attempts from the floor to regain the momentum.

This will be Gonzaga's second appearance in the Final Four after losing in the national title game in 2017. Here are three of the biggest takeaway's from Tuesday's win.

Timme versus Mobley(s)

USC's post duo of brothers Evan and Isaiah Mobley combined for 36 points and carried the Trojans during an otherwise inefficient offensive performance. But they were no match for Timme's skill around the rim. USC entered the game ranked sixth nationally with 5.3 blocks per game, with Evan Mobley accounting for 3.0 per game and Isaiah at 1.0.

But the Trojans did not register a single blocked shot against Gonzaga, and Timme's 15 first half points set the tone for another dominant offensive performance from Gonzaga. Evan Mobley is the more-celebrated NBA Draft prospect, largely because of his defensive prowess, but Timme negated that element of his game and may have earned some respect for himself with pro scouts.

Triple-double territory

Suggs came within two assists of a triple-double and proved once again why he is likely destined to be a top-three pick in the 2021 NBA Draft. The 6-foot-4 point guard controlled the pace of the game and made truly spectacular passes.

Gonzaga has not frequently landed the top-15 type prospects under coach Mark Few. But Suggs, who was ranked No. 11 in the 2020 class by the 247Sports Composite, has been spectacular for the Bulldogs. He could average 20 points or more per game for many schools. However, his combination of talent and unselfishness have helped push Gonzaga from great to historically elite. Tuesday's game was just the latest illustration of that.

No perimeter boost

USC hit 11-of-18 attempts from 3-point range in a dominant win over Kansas in the second round and made 10-of-17 against Oregon in the Sweet 16. However, the Trojans went cold from beyond the arc against Gonzaga, making just 4-of-15 attempts. 

The lack of outside shooting stunted the Trojans' ability to keep pace early and kept them from climbing back into the game after Gonzaga established a double-digit lead.

Let's block ads! (Why?)

source https://www.google.com/url?rct=j&sa=t&url=https://www.cbssports.com/college-basketball/news/gonzaga-vs-usc-score-live-2021-ncaa-tournament-updates-elite-eight-bracket-highlights-live-stream/live/&ct=ga&cd=CAIyGjBjZWNkYTc1ZDc4NTFiNjM6Y29tOmVuOlVT&usg=AFQjCNETdiIsMe96PVF5XkhfS29HKb-mVg