SPOKANE, Wash. – The Gonzaga Bulldogs were relentless on the offensive glass on Saturday afternoon, as their 19 offensive rebounds, two short of their season high against UC Irvine, and 19 second-chance points fueled them to a 67-55 win over Portland inside the McCarthey Athletic Center.
It wasn’t the Zags best shooting night, as they shot 37 percent and Portland shot 41.8 percent from the field, but their rebounding prowess, a 42-26 overall advantage, more than made up for the gap. Elle Tinkle led with 16 points, two shy of her season high, and grabbed six rebounds. Jill Barta joined her in double figures with 10, and Kiara Kudron was a bucket short of another double-double with eight points and 11 rebounds. Laura Stockton led with five assists and Chandler Smith had a great game off the bench with eight points, six rebounds, four assists, and three steals, tying her career-high in swipes.
After an early Zags lead, Portland secured control and led 12-9 with 2:31 left in the first. Gonzaga wrestled that away with four-straight points capped by a layup from Kudron, and never gave the lead back. It turned into a 16-2 run that saw GU ahead 25-14 three minutes into the second quarter. Smith scored six points over that stretch.
Portland fought back, mainly by using the three ball, and tied the game at 37 with 5:04 remaining in the third. The Zags finished the game from there on a methodical 30-18 run adding points to the lead on every possession and limiting the turnovers that plagued them early in the half.
Gonzaga fought through a physical game in the post and made 22-of-28 free throws. Portland settled for more jump shots and was just two-of-five from the stripe. Gonzaga’s bench outscored the Pilots 21-9, with five points and four rebounds coming from Emma Wolfram, and GU scored 22 points off 16 UP turnovers.
Gonzaga embarks on a two-game road stand next week, beginning with Loyola Marymount on Thursday at 7:00 pm. The game is live on THEW.TV.