It’s Saturday, April 3, 2021, and the Gonzaga Bulldogs are in the NCAA Final Four, two games away from being part of history.
Standing in their way is a Cinderella team, the UCLA Bruins. The Bruins started in the first four games of March Madness, meaning they were not even a top-64 team in the tournament.
During the first half, UCLA is fantastic A late basket by forward Corey Kispert gives Gonzaga the lead at intermission, 45-44.
The second half is also back and forth. A team goes on a run, then the other responds.
The game is tied with 15 seconds left. UCLA rebounds the ball, pushes up the court, and guard Johnny Juzang drives in for a layup. But the referee blows his whistle as Gonzaga’s Drew Timme draws the most important charge call of his life (playing with four fouls) and Juzang’s basket does not count.
The game goes into overtime. Timme dominates the scoring for Gonzaga, while freshman guard Jalen Suggs is quiet.
With 12 seconds left Gonzaga is up by two, but UCLA has the ball. Juzang drives with 6 seconds left and tries a fade-away but misses the shot as it hits the front of the rim. However, the ball bounces right back to him and he lays it in for a score, tying it at 90-90.
However, there is still time. With 3.3 seconds left, Gonzaga has the ball and brings it in from beneath UCLA’s basket.
One of the greatest moments in college basketball history is about to happen.
Suggs banks in a shot from 40 feet to win the game, 93-90. Gonzaga moves on!
However, the Bulldogs cannot complete their goal of a perfect season. Two nights later, they lose to Baylor University in the national championship game, 86-70.
The 2020-21 Gonzaga Bulldogs finished just short of perfection at 31-1. We look forward to their continued greatness in seasons to come.