SAN BRUNO, Calif. – The West Coast Conference announced the brackets and game times for the 2017 WCC Basketball Championships in Las Vegas. The tournament begins Thursday with the women’s opening-round game and continues through the men’s championship game on Tuesday, March 7.
The Gonzaga women, led by former Montana high school stars Elle Tinkle and Jill Barta, are the No. 1 seed after winning the regular-season championship. They will begin their tournament play Friday at 1 p.m. against either Pepperdine or Pacific, who play each other in Thursday’s opening-round game.
Barta, who never lost a game while playing at Fairfield High School, leads the Bulldogs with 16.2 points per game. She also averages 6.3 rebounds per game, which is second on the team.
Tinkle, a former Missoula Big Sky star, averages 8.3 points and 5.4 rebounds per game. Both rank third on the team. Tinkle leads the team in blocks and steals, swatting 32 shots and swiping 50 steals in 29 games. Barta is second on the team with 27 blocks.
The Gonzaga men will also enter the tournament as the No. 1 seed. The Bulldogs will play the winner of the Pacific/Pepperdine opening-round game in the quarterfinals on Saturday. That game will be on ESPN2 at 8 p.m.
Ryan Edwards of Kalispell Glacier High School plays sparingly for the fourth-ranked Bulldogs, appearing in 15 games this season and scoring 32 total points. The Bulldogs suffered their first loss of the season Saturday, 79-71 to BYU.
Every game from the tournament will be nationally televised. Twelve games can be seen on BYUtv and www.TheW.tv. Twelve tournament games will also be streamed on Twitter. Live links for all Gonzaga games can be found at www.GoZags.com.
The men’s semifinal games will air on ESPN and ESPN2 on March 6. The first game is schedule for 7 p.m. on ESPN, and the other semifinal will immediately follow on ESPN2. The championship game on March 7 will be at 7 p.m. on ESPN.
The women’s championship game on March 7 will be at 2 p.m. on ESPNU.