Gonzaga vs. St. Mary's - it's perhaps the most heated rivalry out west. Sorry Arizona vs. UCLA, sorry Utah State vs. BYU, it's the truth. Lately it's also produced a ton of great basketball games and one such was the final of the West Coast Conference tournament last year.
So, forgive us if we thought we'd maybe, just maybe see something of a similar sort in the WCC tournament final nearly a year to the day removed from a pure classic?
Instead the No. 1 ranked team in the country, Gonzaga, did what it's done to the Gaels all season long - it blew the doors off of them, winning the WCC tournament title 65-51 going away. It completed a season sweep and believe it or not was actually the closest game between the two all season long.
With the blowout the Zags have made one heck of a case for a No. 1 seed in the upcoming NCAA tournament as well. They went 16-0 in the West Coast Conference and sit at 31-2 overall in a year where there haven't been any "great" teams this is perhaps the most deep and complete team we've seen.
That was on full display on Monday night as Gonzaga had forward Kelly Olynyk go off for a double-double of 21 points and 12 rebounds and fellow forward Elias Harris had 19 points as well. Those two alone did enough damage as the Gaels only countered with Stephen Holt's 19 points in the losing effort.
Up next for Gonzaga in really breaking the "glass ceiling" of the mid-major status is gaining that No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament and it's something we'll be watching for big time come Sunday night at 6pm Eastern.