BGOC: No. 3 Gonzaga at St. Mary’s

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This is the battle between number one and two in the West Coast Conference, Gonzaga and St. Mary’s.  Earlier this season Gonzaga dominated St. Mary’s, 68-47.

The Bulldogs of Gonzaga are ranked No. 3 in the nation and not looking to tarnish their record this season. St. Mary’s, on the other hand, has nothing to lose and hopes to derail the Bulldogs and make a late run in the WCC. Tip-off is at 10 p.m. ET tonight.

Why You Should Care:

If St. Mary’s pulls the upset off it will send the WCC into a little bit of chaos and bring the Gaels within two games of the Bulldogs.  With Gonzaga, St. Mary’s and BYU playing their best basketball right now, a loss for the Bulldogs could make things interesting.

Match-up to Watch:

It’s going to be a battle of the forwards between Brad Waldow (St. Mary’s) and Kyle Wiltjer (Gonzaga).  Both of these forwards are the key players for their teams every game. With both of these teams thinking that they have a chance to win the WCC, it will be a very physical game and if either of these players don’t show up for their team, it’s going to be a horrible turnout.

X-Factor:

It’s going to be the same as the match-up to watch, their most important players are their X-factors. Gonzaga’s Wiltjer has averaged at least 20 points in each of the last four games, leading the Bulldogs. Meanwhile, Waldow (St. Mary’s) leads his team in average points per game, rebounds and field goal percentage. As the senior leader, watch for Waldow to put the game on his shoulders.

Prediction:

Like the first game they played this season, I think the Bulldogs of Gonzaga are going to pull off the win, but closer than the first meeting, 67-60.

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