(AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

Losing in the NCAA Tournament is always an emotional time for the players, particularly when it comes in the national championship game.

Point guard Nigel Williams-Goss, Gonzaga's leader, felt it after the Zags' 71-65 loss to North Carolina.

The thoughtful junior was overcome with emotion during an interview with ESPN and again during Gonzaga's post-game news conference.

Gonzaga was close to its first national championship, leading 65-63 with 1:53 left, but didn't score again. Williams-Goss tried to lead the Zags back despite spraining his right ankle late in the game, but couldn't get the lift he needed to get off a shot with 16 second left.

“I think it was good for the Zags to get to the national championship game,” Williams-Goss said while fighting back tears during the post-game news conference. “We did a lot of things that people didn't expect us to do this year. We put in the work and we were right there, good enough to win a national championship.”

Williams-Goss is a junior and will have to decide if he wants to return to the Zags or leave early for the NBA.