The Gonzaga women got another double-double from Zykera Rice and held Colorado State to three third quarter points en route to a 50-39 victory. The win improves their record to 7-1, their best start under Lisa Fortier. They host undefeated and #8 Stanford on Sunday afternoon.
Colorado State ran a zone and dared Gonzaga to shoot threes, a team not known for being great at it. Instead, Jessie Loera and Katie Campbell each hit a pair of triples and Gonzaga held an 18-15 lead after a quarter. In the second, after Colorado State extended to take away the three, Gonzaga pounded it inside and Zykera Rice went to work. Rice scored the first six points of the quarter and extended Gonzaga’s lead to double digits. After a Laura Stockton buzzer beater, the Zags held a 33-24 lead at half.
In the third quarter, Gonzaga held the Rams to a dismal 1-for-18 from the floor and three total points. They led by 18 heading to the fourth. Despite some cold shooting, the lead was enough to hold on to down the stretch, and a couple garbage time baskets from CSU made the score appear closer than it was.
Gonzaga held CSU to 30 percent from the field, including 4-for-23 from beyond the arc. Jenn Wirth was welcomed back on the floor for the first time after recovering from a broken finger and got a nice ovation from the McCarthey Athletic Center. She hit a bucket and grabbed four rebounds in 12 minutes.
Gonzaga now has a few days to prepare for Stanford. Two rotation players for the Cardinal are injured, including Lexie Hull, the Central Valley High School (Spokane Valley) standout who led the Lady Bears to a National Championship last season. No word on if she will be ready to play, but her sister Lacie is healthy and will play minutes off the bench. Gonzaga will need to continue playing lockdown defense to compete, but their offense will need to finally break out if they want a shot at winning. Tip-Off is at 2 pm on Sunday and it can be watched locally on SWX.