For the fifth year in a row, Gonzaga and St. Mary's battled it out for a WCC title and a spot in the NCAA tournament.
Unlike the previous two installments, however, this one wasn't close. The No. 1 Bulldogs got a balanced effort and dominated the Gaels, 65-51, to make their case for a top seed in the Big Dance.
Early in the first half, Gonzaga showed off why so many have the Zags currently pegged as a No. 1 seed, displaying a stunningly impressive inside-outside combination.
Elias Harris, Kelly Olynyk and Sam Dower combined for 27 points as Saint Mary's looked overwhelmed on the inside, but the Zags' point guard duo was just as dominant. Kevin Pangos added four points and five rebounds, while David Stockton chipped in three points, two assists and three steals off the bench.
But despite all that, and despite Gonzaga's scorching 64.0 percent mark from the field, and despite early struggles from stud point guard Matthew Dellavedova, St. Mary's weathered the storm and trailed by just nine at halftime.
Unfortunately for the Gaels, the second half was simply more of the same.
Gonzaga went on a 15-5 run in the first seven minutes to extend the lead to 53-34. The Zags never looked back.
The final 20 minutes were essentially a coast for the No. 1 team in the nation, but that didn't stop David Stockton and Olynyk from providing this rim-rattling highlight:
St. Mary's got 19 points from Stephen Holt, but it was far from enough and the Gaels will now have to sweat it out as a member of the bubble for the next week.
Pre-game, Yahoo! Sports' Jeff Eisenberg gave us an idea of Gonzaga's considerable advantage in the stands:
The Bill Walton parody account, meanwhile, was more interested with Olynyk's long, flowing locks, which bare a striking resemblance to a certain superhero with a hammer:
So, there's that. But back to the hard court. At halftime, Sports Illustrated's Andy Glockner noted the incredible statistical discrepancies in the nine-point game:
As Gonzaga pulled away in the second half, however, much of the talk began to surround the Bulldogs' potential. CBS Sports' Jeff Borzello made his opinion pretty clear:
The Seattle Times' Jerry Brewer noticed an important difference in this year's squad:
ESPN concluded by showing just how dominant Gonzaga have been.