Zag women prepared for another physical matchup with SMC
The top-seeded Gonzaga women face Saint Mary’s in a WCC tournament semifinal tonight after splitting two regular-season matchups with the Gaels.
The Gaels won in overtime in the WCC opener for both teams in Moraga. The Bulldogs (27-4) clinched their 10th straight WCC title with a 75-65 victory on Feb. 27.
“They are physical, that’s why in the past they’ve given us some troubles,” Gonzaga coach Kelly Graves said. “They try, for lack of a better term, to ugly-up the game a little bit. But they’re a good team, no question.”
Fourth-seeded Saint Mary’s (22-8) trailed by 17 in the second half but rallied for a 60-58 win over San Diego on Friday. Seniors Jackie Nared (20 points), Danielle Mauldin (11 rebounds) and Kate Gaze (13 points, five assists) fuel the Gaels at both ends of the court.
Gaze had 10 turnovers in the first meeting, but Nared and Mauldin combined for 51 points.
“It’s a deserving matchup; all the seeds held (in the quarterfinals),” Graves said. “It’s good because it prepares us for later on, the NCAA tournament. Let’s face it, all of those teams are going to be physical.”