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Incredible! Gonzaga Defeats BYU 75 - 74 in another last minute comeback.

What a way to end the BYU conference rivalry

NCAA Basketball: Gonzaga at Brigham Young Rob Gray-USA TODAY Sports

For the third consecutive game, Gonzaga comes back with a seemingly improbable, impossible win 75 – 74 in their last conference game in Provo, Utah. Julian Stawther, who was 2 for 7 from deep on the night, hit a 25-foot dagger with 9.5 seconds left on the clock to give the Zags the victory.

Gonzaga was led by Drew Timme with 21 points and 13 rebounds, Anton Watson added 13 points and 8 rebound with Rasir Bolton and Nolan Hickman both adding 5 assists. BYU was led by Spencer Johnson with 18 points, Gideon George and Jaxson Robinson both added 17 points and Fousseyni Traore grabbed 9 rebounds,

What a game! What the Zags lacked in execution and perimeter defense were more than made up for by another unbelievable clutch performance. Down by 10 with about five minutes left to play, a Gonzaga team that seemingly could never get uncorked in the second half started to make plays; Julian Strawther with two three-pointers (including the game winner), Hunter Sallis and Nolan Hickman both hitting huge treys and Drew Timme with a dunk and an old fashioned three point play to bring the Zags all the way back.

Gonzaga didn’t have the terrible start like they did in the last two games, but they did get down 19 – 13 after seven minutes. Thanks to Ben Gregg’s hustle and enthusiasm, not to mention six quick points, an offensive rebound and assist, Gonzaga knotted the score at 19.

Gonzaga then made a run extending the lead to 10 points and it looked like a Zags team from years past, possibly blowing out BYU by the half. Nope, turnovers and defensive lapses allowed BYU to claw back cutting the lead to five 44 – 39 at the half.

The first five minutes of the second half were ugly for both teams, Gonzaga started 1 for 9 from the floor and BYU was 1 for 6. Ben Gregg entered the game, again giving Gonzaga a spark, but consecutive GU turnovers led to two BYU treys giving the Cougars a 54 – 52 lead.

Gonzaga’s struggles from the field continued for the next 10 minutes, but BYU, who’s three-point shooting this year has been the worst in more than a decade, got hot from beyond the arc hitting seven of their first eight from deep.

Gonzaga had nine second half turnovers and their failure to rotate to the open shooter allowed both Jaxson Robinson and Spencer Johnson far too many open looks. Gonzaga just seemed flat and it appeared the law of averages would finally catch up leading to defeat. It sure seemed likely behind 68 – 58 with just over five minutes to play.

Suddenly, Gonzaga came to life, pressure defense took advantage of BYU turnover propensity coupled with just incredibly clutch shots. Say what you want about Mark Few, but he inspires his players with the confidence to take shots that would lose the game if missed. Hunter Sallis, he of the 23% from deep from deep nailed a clutch shot to cut the deficit to one. Gideon George hit a trey for BYU with 1:25 to play to extend the lead to four.

A Hickman steal then his quick three cut the lead to one again with a minute to play. GU then had to commit three quick fouls to get BYU into the bonus. Jaxson Robinson, the BYU hero of the half, made his first free throw, missed the second, setting up Julian Strawther’s game winner. BYU never got a clean look in the final nine seconds.

I don’t ever remember a streak like the last three games. Just heart-stopping but incredibly satisfying.

Gonzaga returns to the Kennel on Saturday to take on Portland at 7:00 p.m..