Gonzaga fends off late push from Florida State, takes 72-58 win over Seminoles

Gonzaga fends off late push from Florida State, takes 72-58 win over Seminoles
Rui Hachimura with the slam against Pacific.

It started with an emphatic dunk from Florida State, but Thursday turned out much differently than last year’s Sweet Sixteen round for the Gonzaga Bulldogs.

A Rui Hachimura layup three minutes into the game gave the Zags their first lead of the game, and one they wouldn’t let go of all night.

Hachimura led the way on offense with 17 points. Four other Bulldogs scored in double figures along with him.

The Bulldogs’ defense limited FSU to mostly tough, contested lay-ins, fade-away jump shots or desperation shots as the shot clock wound down. Gonzaga’s largest lead of the first half was 14 points.

After taking an 11-point halftime lead, the Zags got FSU 7’4″ center Christ Koumadje in foul trouble with 14 minutes to play in the game.

The Seminoles put the full-court press on late in the second half, and got within four thanks to 17 points from Trent Forrest.

Just like last year in the NCAA Tourament , Zach Norvell Jr. found a rhythm from three-point range, draining for 14 points after a tough first round. He hit one from the left wing with two minutes remaining to give the Zags a seven point edge, and FSU wouldn’t get any closer.

They advance to the Elite Eight for the first time since 2017, and face the winner of Tennesse-Purdue on Saturday.

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