Logan Johnson continued his recent scoring run with 29 points on 12-of-15 shooting and No. 15 Saint Mary’s clinched at least a share of the West Coast Conference regular-season title by dismantling Pacific 83-52 on Thursday night at Moraga, Calif.
Alex Ducas added 17 points, seven rebounds and four blocked shots, and Mitchell Saxen had 11 points and six boards for the Gaels (25-5, 14-1 WCC), who won for the 16th time in the past 17 games. It is the first time Saint Mary’s has grabbed a share of the WCC crown since the 2015-16 season.
The Gaels can claim the outright title when they face No. 12 Gonzaga in Saturday’s regular-season finale at Spokane, Wash. Saint Mary’s won the first meeting.
Jordan Ivy-Curry scored 11 points for Pacific (13-17, 6-9), which lost its third straight game and fifth of the past six. The Tigers fell for the 16th time in the past 17 meetings with the Gaels.
Johnson, who had seven assists, has scored at least 27 points in four of the past five games. The senior also has outputs of a career-best 34, 31 and 27 during the hottest stretch of his five-year career, the last four seasons with the Gaels.
Augustas Marciulionis added 10 points for Saint Mary’s, which shot 49.2 percent from the field and made 8 of 22 from 3-point range.
The Gaels committed just six turnovers while forcing Pacific into 19. Saint Mary’s had a dominating 23-6 edge in points off turnovers.
The Tigers connected on just 33.3 percent of their shots, including 4 of 15 from behind the arc.
Johnson scored 20 points on 8-of-11 shooting as the Gaels led 48-31 at the break.
Pacific trailed by just two before Saint Mary’s went on an 18-4 burst to take a 30-14 lead with 8:19 left in the half. Johnson scored nine points during the run, including a 3-pointer to end the surge.
The Gaels stretched the lead to 20 for the first time on a basket by Ducas with 49 seconds remaining in the half.
The onslaught continued in the second half and Saxen’s inside hoop gave Saint Mary’s a 65-35 advantage with 12:08 left in the contest. The lead topped out at 36.
–Field Level Media