PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - Josh Heytvelt scored 22 points - seven during a decisive, late run - and Gonzaga rallied to get past determined but ultimately overwhelmed Akron 77-64 on Thursday night.
Micah Downs added 15 points for fourth-seeded Gonzaga (27-5), which won for the 19th time in 20 games. The Bulldogs are in their 11th consecutive NCAA tournaments but had lost in the first round of the last two.
Getting zapped in the first round by the 13th-seeded Zips seemed possible for a while. Akron (23-13) was up six at half.
Nate Linhart scored 13 points in the first half, but had no field goals after halftime for the Zips, who won the Mid-American Conference tournament to get in to its first NCAA tournament in 23 years.
(Copyright 2009 By The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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