SPOKANE, Wash. — No. 2 Gonzaga easily brushed aside BYU 102-68 on Saturday night to clear the path for the Bulldogs to likely move No. 1 when the college basketball rankings are released on Monday.
Gonzaga led 51-38 at halftime and used a late 23-3 run to outscore the Cougars 51-30 in the second half en route to the comfortable victory.
Zach Norvell Jr. scored 25 points off the bench and Rui Hachimura added a double-double with 23 points and 10 rebounds for the Bulldogs (27-2, 14-0) who have won 18 in succession, the longest streak in the nation.
Josh Perkins had 21 points and seven assists, while junior forward Brandon Clarke contributed a double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds in a win for Gonzaga, which has already secured the West Coast Conference regular-season crown.
“It couldn’t have been scripted better,” said Gonzaga coach Mark Few. “We shared it and took great care of the ball. Our offense was clicking.
“We were able to string some stops together. … That’s when we made our separation.”
Yoeli Childs had 18 points and seven rebounds and TJ Haws finished 18 points and eight assists for BYU (18-12, 10-5), which turned the ball over 15 times and shot 8-for21 from 3-point range for 38 percent.
“Our execution was not there at the end of the game,” BYU coach Dave Rose said.
“That’s two games in a row that have gotten away from us in the last seven or eight minutes.”
BYU, which has lost two straight, will host San Diego in its final regular-season fixture next Saturday night.
Meanwhile, Gonzaga will play at Pacific on Thursday night.