The Gonzaga women relied on the same formula Thursday, and it paid off again in a 66-54 West Coast Conference win at Pepperdine.
The Zags shot well from the field and from long range and made the most of their free-throw opportunities to improve to 15-4 overall and 6-0 in the WCC.
The only thing they didn’t do was dominate on the boards but still outrebounded the Waves 33 to 30.
GU was locked in a close game until late in the third quarter when it pulled away to take a 56-34 lead into the fourth.
The win allowed GU to keep pace with first-place BYU, which beat Santa Clara 76-44 to improve to 7-0 in the WCC. BYU is at Gonzaga on Feb. 5.
The win was Gonzaga’s 10th straight and 26th in the past 27 meetings over Pepperdine (5-9 overall, 1-3 WCC).
The Zags jumped out to a 9-0 lead on a putback layin by Anamaria Virjoghe, but the Waves scored the next eight points to get back in it.
Gonzaga pulled away steadily from there, leading 18-11 after one quarter and 39-25 at halftime.
The Zags got another balanced scoring effort, with three players in double figures.
Senior forward Melody Kempton led the way with 14 points and six rebounds. She also made all six of her foul shots.
Kaylynne Truong had 11 points and made 3-of-4 long-range shots while also dishing out five assists.
Eliza Hollingsworth got 12 points off the bench while shooting 5 for 8.
The Zags came into the game 20th in the nation and first in the WCC in free-throw percentage at 77.7%. That will go up after a 16-for-18 night at the line.
Gonzaga shot 39% (21-for-54) from the field, but slightly better (8-for-20, or 40%) from long range. The Zags also forced 17 Pepperdine turnovers and turned them into 22 points.
The Zags took their first 20-point lead on a 3-pointer by Kaylynne Truong with 4 minutes, 29 seconds left in the game.
The Zags are at San Diego on Saturday afternoon, then return to the Kennel next week against Pacific and BYU.
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