Coming into the 1 p.m. Saturday showdown with No. 6 Stanford, the No. 23 Gonzaga women’s basketball team has all the marks of a good team that has yet to find it’s true identity.
Despite off nights Tuesday against Wisconsin for Haiden Palmer (6 points, 6 rebounds) and Lindsay Sherbert (9 points, 6 rebounds), the Zags got a huge lift from senior guard Jazmine Redmon. She scored 15 points on 5-of-8 from the floor and 3-for-3 from the 3-point line.
Graves sang her praises, noting that Redmon currently has 45 assists to only nine turnovers on the year.
“Both Taylor Karr and Courtney (Vandersloot) twice led the nation in assist-to-turnover ratio. For Redmon to be 5-to-1 (in the same category) is incredible,” Graves said.
While Shaniqua Nilles hit her only four points when it counted against Ohio State – including a jumper on the last second to win it – the game was won in the trenches by 6-3 forward Sunny Greinacher. She pounded out 18 points and 14 rebounds, half of which were on the offensive end.
“The best game she has played was against Ohio State,” Graves said of the 59-58 victory. “It was just the way she rebounded against a strong, physical front line. She played more aggressive than I ever saw her play. If she plays like that way all the time, we become a much better team.”
But against Wisconsin, Greinacher struggled from the floor going 4-of-11, and 0-for-1 from the 3-point line. However, Greinacher did go 4-of-4 from the free throw line to finish with 12 points and six rebounds in the 70-55 win.
“I thought she tried to do a little too much, and it got her into trouble,” Graves said.
ESPN writer Graham Hays writes here about how the West Coast Conference is raising its profile with several women’s basketball teams listed among the top of the “mid-majors.”
Despite her heroics to win the Ohio State game, Nilles said she is not pushing for more minutes on the court. The sophomore from West Valley High School is averaging about nine minutes a game and she is averaging three points.
“I’m on a great team with great players,” Nilles said. “It’s not about the minutes. I’m just glad I’m here.”