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Williams-Goss, Gonzaga stave off Northwestern

SALT LAKE CITY -- Nigel Williams-Goss scored 20 points while Jordan Mathews and Zach Collins added 14 apiece to help No. 1 seed Gonzaga survive a late rally and beat Northwestern 79-73 on Saturday in the second round of the West Region of the NCAA Tournament.

The Bulldogs (34-1) prevailed despite scoring just four baskets over the final 13 minutes of the second half. Gonzaga has advanced to the Sweet 16 for the third consecutive season.

Crying Northwestern kid is viral fan of March Madness

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Crying Northwestern kid is viral fan of March Madness
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Crying Northwestern kid is viral fan of March Madness
March https://t.co/8CjSgCnjGK
When a tweet I sent 10 seconds ago still has no favs https://t.co/5NBgXi6l4g
OMG that kid was awesome
I hope we all find something we love as much as this kid loves Northwestern basketball. https://t.co/QrB9P6wru6
Crying Northwestern kid dot gif https://t.co/LoRUCqdByo
Need a camera on the crying Northwestern kid for the rest of the game. Need it. https://t.co/LHoctvsffi
That crying Northwestern kid has my heart #MarchMadness https://t.co/TwaFvoZ7oW
The Northwestern Basketball Fan Meme went from Guy Reading A Book During The NIT to Kid Crying During The NCAA's. W… https://t.co/4QECe1cIpI
Seems like Crying Northwestern Boy is the best thing we're getting out of the tournament and I'm okay with that. https://t.co/tqbltqNoMu
Great job by the director calling for the zoom in on the crying Northwestern kid https://t.co/eTWK1v9034
Northwestern on a 6-0 run since Crying Yelling Northwestern Kid became a meme. He is our savior. No weapon formed against us shall prosper.
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Bryant McIntosh scored 20 points and Vic Law added 18 and eight rebounds to lead the Wildcats.Northwestern (24-12) rallied from a 21-point deficit in the second half, but ultimately couldn't fully overcome a sluggish start on offense.

Northwestern could get nothing to work on offense before halftime. The Wildcats shot just 30 percent from the field and did not make a 3-pointer until Law buried a long-distance basket with 1:01 left in the first half.

Gonzaga took full advantage of Northwestern's offensive struggles. The Bulldogs allowed a single basket over a 10:15 stretch in the first half and built a 22-8 lead during that stretch. Williams-Goss and Mathews made back-to-back baskets to break an early 6-6 tie. Williams-Goss finished off the lengthy run on a dunk with 6:27 left before halftime.

SEE ALSO: Crying Northwestern kid is the viral fan of this NCAA tournament

Gonzaga eventually led by as many as 22 points in the first half. The Bulldogs went up 34-12 with 2:30 remaining before halftime when Przemek Karnowski scored a pair of baskets sandwiched around a dunk from Williams-Goss over three straight possessions.

Northwestern cut the deficit to 44-32 early in the second half on Law's corner 3-pointer. Williams-Goss quickly dialed up a basket from the perimeter on the other end. Collins followed by driving to the rim and converting 3-point plays on back-to-back possessions to give Gonzaga a 53-34 lead.

The Wildcats didn't go away. Nathan Taphorn buried a pair of 3-pointers to cap a 15-4 run and cut Gonzaga's lead to 59-50.

Once the Bulldogs' lead fell under single digits, Northwestern ratcheted up the pressure. The Wildcats trimmed it to 63-58 with 5:31 remaining on Law's putback dunk off a missed 3-pointer from McIntosh.

Northwestern lost valuable momentum when Collins appeared to commit goaltending after blocking Dererk Pardon's layup attempt with 4:58 left that would have cut it to three. Chris Collins got hit with a technical foul for protesting the no-call and Williams-Goss made a pair of free throws on the other end.

Gonzaga eventually extended its lead to 69-59 on a jumper with 3:00 left. The Wildcats never drew closer than five points the rest of the way.

NOTES: Northwestern went just 1 of 11 from 3-point range in the first half. The Wildcats missed 10 straight baskets from the perimeter before finally making one. ... Gonzaga C Zach Collins finished with four blocks. ... Northwestern outscored Gonzaga 17-3 in points off turnovers after halftime. The Wildcats forced 11 second-half turnovers. Gonzaga G Nigel Williams-Goss scored 14 of his 20 points in the first half.

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