Saint Mary's sends a message

Saint Mary's coach Randy Bennett told Andy Katz last week that the Gaels would set out during the West Coast Conference tournament to "remove all doubt."

A 69-55 semifinal win over a good Portland team might have at least taken out a big chunk of it, with No. 2-seeded Saint Mary's advancing to today's championship game against Gonzaga.

Matthew Dellavedova, Mickey McConnell and Omar Samhan each scored 16 points to lead Saint Mary's. Freshman Jorden Page also scored a career-high 14 points and shut down Jared Stohl, the Pilots' 3-point specialist who was held to four points on made free throws.

The Zags have a six-game winning streak going against the Gaels and hope to beat them three times again just like last year.

Doing so this season might not deny Saint Mary's an NCAA tournament bid, though.