MORAGA, Calif. — MORAGA, Calif. (AP) — Aidan Mahaney scored 18 points and took the game over in crunch time, leading No. 18 Saint Mary's to a 78-70 overtime win over No. 12 Gonzaga on Saturday night for the Gaels' 12th straight victory.
Mahaney scored or assisted on 19 of 21 points in a stretch that started with the Gaels (21-4, 10-0 West Coast Conference) trailing by four points with five minutes to play in regulation.
The freshman put Saint Mary's in control in overtime when he banked in a 3-pointer and then found former Ingraham high school star Mitchell Saxen with a no-look pass for a layup that made it 70-64.
The Bulldogs (19-5, 8-2), who didn't trail for the final 37 minutes of regulation, couldn't catch up and fell two games behind in the conference race.
Drew Timme scored 23 points to lead Gonzaga, but got little help offensively from the rest of his team.
Saxen added 15 points for Saint Mary's and Alex Ducas scored 14.
The Gaels have been the only team really to challenge the Bulldogs in the WCC for more than the past decade, with their 10 wins against Gonzaga since the start of the 2009-10 season more than triple the second-best team.
This was the 10th time these teams have met when both were ranked, with Gonzaga winning eight of the first nine. But the Gaels came into this one as the favorite for a change and followed up last year's home win over the Bulldogs with another one.
Saint Mary's played from behind for most of the night as Gonzaga got out to an 11-point lead in the first half.
But the Gaels got back into it late in the second half with Mahaney converting a three-point play and Logan Johnson hitting a 3-points to cut a eight-point deficit to two with less than six minutes to play.
Mahaney, who started the game 1 for 10, then hit four straight drives to help Saint Mary's tie it at 57 with 3:22 to play.
The teams traded baskets in the final minute of regulation with Julian Strawther hitting a floater with 33.8 seconds left and Saxen answering with 5.5 seconds remaining for Saint Mary's to send it to overtime.
Gonzaga: Timme moved past Jim McPhee (2,015 points) for second place on Gonzaga's career scoring list with 2,031 points. He again came up in key spots for the Bulldogs and still has a shot to break Frank Burgess' school record of 2,196 points.
Saint Mary's: The Gaels didn't get much from Johnson, who fouled out with 4:51 to play after shooting just 4 of 14 from the field for 12 points. But Mahaney carried them down the stretch to get the win.
Gonzaga: Hosts San Francisco on Thursday night.
Saint Mary's: Visits Loyola Marymount on Thursday night.