Gonzaga women earn 19th-straight win, downing BYU at home by 15
SPOKANE, Wash. — The No. 12/11 Gonzaga women’s basketball team picked up its 20th-straight win Saturday with a 59-44 win over visiting BYU Saturday afternoon in front of a sold-out McCarthey Athletic Center.
Gonzaga was led by a career-high tying 17 points from Katie Campbell. Campbell finished 7-of-10 from the floor and 3-of-4 from long range with five steals and five rebounds. Jill Townsend added 16 points and three rebounds for the Zags.
“It was a hard-fought game,” head coach Lisa Fortier said. “It’s a dogfight when you play BYU. You always have to expect that.”
Gonzaga (22-1, 11-0 WCC) forced 21 turnovers on visiting BYU (13-8, 8-3 WCC) while registering 11 steals on the afternoon. The Cougars are the 12 opponent this season that the Zags have held to 50 or fewer points, and BYU’s 44 points is nearly 20 points fewer than its season average of 62.0. Despite losing the rebounding battle 37-25, GU’s 11 offensive rebounds edged the Cougars in second-chance points, 15-14.
The Bulldogs struggled to get started in the first quarter, scoring just seven points in the opening 10 minutes behind 21.4 percent shooting from the floor. But a 19-point second quarter, fueled by eight points from Kayleigh Truong, saw the Zags overcome a nine-point deficit to take the lead heading into the break. A big part of that scoring run came from two monstrous treys in the final minute, one from Campbell and another from Jenn Wirth. The duo hit back-to-back threes to lift the Zags over BYU 26-25 heading into the break.
“The momentum that we got on those two big shots—Katie made one and Jenn made one—that gave us a good positive tone going into the locker room,” Fortier said. “Our team was able to carry it through. They just played really hard.”
Gonzaga outscored BYU 14-9 in the third to extend its lead to six (40-34) and continued to roll in the fourth. GU shot an even 50.0 percent from the floor in the fourth quarter while forcing seven turnovers on the Cougars and limiting them to 10 points. A jumper from LeeAnne Wirth with 30 seconds to go sealed the 59-44 victory.
BYU was led by a game-high 24 points from Brenna Chase-Drollinger while Sara Hamson added nine rebounds and two blocks.
Gonzaga hits the road next week for a pair of games at Pacific (Feb. 6, 7 p.m.) and at Saint Mary’s (Feb. 8, 2 p.m.). Check GoZags.com for up-to-date game time information.