NCAA Tournament 2018, UNC-Greensboro vs Gonzaga

NCAA Tournament 2018, UNC-Greensboro vs Gonzaga

Now, the No. 13 seed Spartans are in the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2001, playing fourth-seeded Gonzaga (30-4) in a West Regional game on Thursday (1:30 p.m., TNT). UNCG won the rebounding contest 41-37.

UNCG was 0-for-13 in the first half from 3-point range as Gonzaga took a 32-23 halftime lead.

Norvell finished with 15 points, with Johnathan Williams leading the way for Gonzaga with 19 points and 13 rebounds, and Josh Perkins adding 16 points.

This story will be updated.

Gonzaga coach Mark Few has his team ready for another deep run a year after making the national championship game. The Zags trashed the Buckeyes 86-59 in November and opened the 2017 NCAA Tournament with a win over South Dakota State.

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In his first NCAA Tournament at UVA in 2012, the 10th-seeded Cavaliers lost in the second round to No. 7 Florida. Bennett, who is 219-85 in nine seasons at Virginia , credits experience with making that success possible.

For a team that lost four times, stayed in the AP top 10 all year and has a coach whose consistency come tournament time remains a trusted meme despite two first-weekend exits in two years, Michigan State has not always inspired confidence in the past month. Earning a 4 seed might be the key to Gonzaga's success this season; without the pressure of being a top-seed off, they can focus on working their way to the top. Gonzaga is outscoring opponents by 17.4 points per game, the second-highest differential in Division I behind Cincinnati (17.8).

"Spokane is a lot closer than UNCG, so please cheer for us", said Perkins, drawing chuckles from the media.

But we'll put Xavier into the Sweet 16, where it will be knocked out by Gonzaga. It missed four straight inside the final 90 seconds that almost cost it the game, and the Bulldogs needed a dose of luck when a potential game-tying three-pointer by Marvin Smith went halfway down before rattling back out.

The Spartans may face an uphill battle, but don't count them out of the fight. "We've got to play our best if we want to advance and I think we're right on the verge of that". "I think that's what you do in this situation as a player and coach".

The first four games in Dayton, Ohio, will be LIU-Brooklyn against Radford and St. Bonaventure against UCLA on Tuesday night, and North Carolina Central against Texas Southern and Arizona State against Syracuse on Wednesday night.

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