MORAGA, Calif. – Jackie Nared scored 27 points and Danielle Mauldin had 24 with 23 rebounds to lift the Saint Mary’s women’s basketball team to a 79-78 overtime victory over No. 24 Gonzaga in a West Coast Conference opener on Saturday.
Haiden Palmer, who had a career-high 31 points, had a couple missed shots in the closing seconds for Gonzaga, which has won the past nine conference championships.
It was a wild ending to regulation with Nared hitting a 3-pointer with 0.3 seconds left to give Saint Mary’s (11-1, 1-0) a 72-71 lead.
But on the ensuing in-bounds play, screener Lindsay Sherbert was fouled and she made one of two free throws for the Bulldogs (10-3, 0-1).
Gonzaga had led since Palmer’s six points fueled a 12-2 run to close the half with a 37-32 lead.
In overtime, Danielle Walter hit a jumper and a 3-pointer to give GU a 78-76 lead with 3 minutes left, but that was the final time the Bulldogs would score.
Mauldin hit three free throws down the stretch to put the Gaels on top. Gonzaga had possession with 5 seconds left, but Palmer’s baseline jumper was short and St. Mary’s escaped with the victory.
Walter, who saw more action after starting point guard Jazmine Redmon went down with a high ankle sprain early in the second half, added a career-high 14 points for Gonzaga. She made 6 of 11 shots from the floor and added three assists.
Keani Albanez added nine points and Redmon added six points, four assists and four steals before being injured.
Nared made 10 of 20 shots for St. Marys, including 6 of 9 3-pointers. She also pulled down 11 rebounds.
Lauren Nicholson chipped in 12 points and six rebounds for the Gaels.
Saint Mary’s pounded Gonzaga on the boards 54-31, with 10 of Mauldin’s career-high coming on the offensive end, and at the foul line, making 23 of 29 while Gonzaga made 6 of 14.
GU forced 26 turnovers and had a 31-11 advantage in points off turnovers.
The Bulldogs play seven of their first nine WCC games on the road. They’ll take on conference newcomer Pacific on Monday. The game was originally scheduled for 5:30 p.m., but was changed to 5.
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