The Gonzaga Bulldogs stood no chance against the Baylor Bears in their 86-70 loss in the National Championship Game.
The Gonzaga Bulldogs were looking to pull off the rarity that was winning the National Championship with an undefeated record. The top-seeded team looked like a juggernaut throughout the tournament before they had to pull off a miracle against the No. 11 UCLA Bruins in the Final Four. Unfortunately for them, the Bulldogs’ luck ran out in the biggest game of the season.
In the National Championship Game on Monday, Gonzaga fell to Baylor 86-70 to lose out on winning their first title in program history. Where did it all go wrong? Well, it happened at the start with freshman guard Jalen Suggs’ foul trouble.
Gonzaga’s early foul troubles sunk them from the start
The Bulldogs could not get out of the gate, as Suggs was called for two fouls in the first three minutes of the game where Baylor held a 9-0 lead. As a result, Suggs was sent to the bench. From there, the Bears extended their lead to 23-8 seven minutes into the first half.
That sunk the Bulldogs from the start, and they simply could not overcome it. They never gained the lead, and saw their deficit grow to a game-high 20 points. Baylor is too good of a team to have your best player sent to the bench three minutes into the game. The Bears made them pay instantly, as they dropped 86 points despite being called for 19 fouls to Gonzaga’s 17.
Suggs tried his hardest to bring Gonzaga back into the game, as he scored a team-high 22-points (8-for-15 from the field, 4-for-6 on free throws), but it just was not enough.
If Gonzaga learned one thing in the contest, it is that you can not let Baylor get hot early on. If you do, you are going to pay the price.
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