Stephanie Golden and Jazmine Redmon combined for 25 points Thursday night as Gonzaga moved a big step closer to a ninth consecutive West Coast Conference title with a 69-54 win over Saint Mary's at McCarthey Athletic Center. Golden and Redmon typically average a combined 10.7 ppg, but they were the big scorers as WCC scoring leader Jackie Nared (17.9 ppg) was shut down by Redmon's tough defense. Sunny Greinacher added 10 points and Taelor Karr nine for the Bulldogs, who have all but wrapped up the conference title with four WCC games left on their schedule. Read story See picture story
Redmon said she never feels she has to score much to make a big contribution.
"I know there are other teammates who are better scorers than I am, so I try to get them the ball," she said. "I'm more the last option."
When asked if she would have predicted being the game's leading scorer, Golden said, "I was? I didn't know that. That's awesome."
Golden, Greinacher, Shelby Cheslek and Kiara Kudron flexed their muscles inside.
"As much as coach says we aren't physical, our big (players), I think we really proved that tonight," Golden said. "I just continued to fight for boards and look for my shot."
Other crucial numbers from the game:
Karr (5-foot-8) led Gonzaga with six rebounds and five steals. Golden added five rebounds. Redmon and Greinacher had four steals apiece as the Bulldogs tallied 17. Haiden Palmer had a game-high five assists.
Gonzaga held WCC rebounding leader Danielle Mauldin (11.2 rpg) to three.
Saint Mary's had 26 turnovers, twice as many as Gonzaga.
"For us, defense usually wins most of the games," Graves said. ... "Yeah, that's kind of what this team has really taken to heart, that end of the floor, which always bodes well because like we always say, defense always travels well.
"That team's RPI coming in tonight was 34 and that's legit."
Graves said he makes a habit of celebrating a win for only a few moments before moving on to the next game.
"Obviously, we're in a good position," he allowed. "We have two games up on everybody, and obviously that's a good position to be in with four to go, but we have to win (at home against San Francisco) on Saturday."