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WCC Women's Basketball Recaps

Jan. 31, 2008

Gonzaga - 74
Saint Mary's - 50

SPOKANE, Wash. - The Gonzaga University women's basketball team earned a 74-50 victory over visiting Saint Mary's College Thursday evening in front of 1,504 fans at the McCarthey Athletic Center. The Bulldogs have won seven-straight and are now a perfect 6-0 in West Coast Conference action and 15-6 overall. With the loss the Gaels fell to 10-12 overall and 2-4 in WCC play.

Sophomore Heather Bowman led Gonzaga with a game-high 21 points, along with six rebounds, three steals and two assists. Bowman, who scored 12 of her 21 points in the second half, hit 8-of-13 from field and sank 5-of-6 at the free throw line.

Along with Bowman, all but one Bulldog scored during the contest. Freshman Courtney Vandersloot chipped in nine points, junior Jami Bjorklund posted eight points and senior Michelle Elliott, freshman Janelle Bekkering and sophomore Tiffanie Shives all added seven points apiece.

Gonzaga, who went into intermission with a 33-21 advantage, broke the game wide open early in the second stanza. The Bulldogs used a 15-6 spurt over the first seven minutes of the final half to widen its gap to a 23 point advantage. Bowman scored 10 of the Zags 15 points during this run, including sinking 4-of-4 free throws.

Saint Mary's was able to slice Gonzaga's lead to 19 at 52-33 on a layup by Louelle Tomlinson at the 10:42 mark, but a 6-0 run pushed the Bulldogs lead back over 20 points.

Saint Mary's was never able to get the Gonzaga's lead under 20 again. The Zags largest lead of the contest was 74-47 after Bekkering stole the ball and made a layup with 21 ticks remaining in the contest.

The key to the Bulldogs success on the night was forcing the Gaels to turn the ball over. Gonzaga capitalized on Saint Mary's miscues as it scored nearly half of its points on SMC turnovers. The Zags forced 29 Gael turnovers, made 16 steals and in turn scored 36 points, 22 in the second stanza, on Gael fumbles.

The Bulldogs closed out the contest shooting 44.6% (29-65) from the floor, including 25.0% (3-12) from behind the three-point arc, and was 72.0% (13-18) at the charity stripe.

Gonzaga outrebounded Saint Mary's 39-34 during the contest. The Zags had a huge 24-14 rebounding edge in the first half, including a 10-0 margin on the offensive boards.

The Gaels were led by Tomlinson and Lauren Shaughnessy who scored 11 and 10 points, respectively.

Gonzaga will be back in action Saturday, Feb. 2 when it welcomes Santa Clara University to the McCarthey Athletic Center. Game time is set for 2 p.m. The Broncos are currently in second place in the WCC with a 5-1 conference mark.

San Diego - 72
Loyola Marymount - 56

SAN DIEGO, Calif. - After setting a career-high 18 points just six days ago, freshman guard Sam Child topped that performance with a 27-point and nine rebound performance to help pace the University of San Diego women's basketball team to a 72-56 West Coast Conference win over visiting Loyola Marymount University Thursday evening in a nationally Televised game on ESPNU at USD's Jenny Craig Pavilion.

With the win, the Toreros snap a five-game losing skid, improve to 10-10 overall and pick up their first WCC win of the season and move to 1-5 in league action. With the loss, the Lions fall to 11-10 overall and 3-3 in the WCC.

Child scored her game-high 27 points on an impressive 11-for-14 shooting performance from the field, including going 3-for-4 from beyond the arc. Child also notched a career-high with nine boards. Two Toreros recorded double-doubles as Kiva Herman scored 14 points and pulled down 10 rebounds and Amber Sprague scored 11 points and had a game-high 12 rebounds. Amanda Rego recorded a game-high 11 assists in the game.

The Lions struggled from the floor all night, finishing at 32.4 percent (22-for-68) and 20.8 percent (5-for-24) from three-point range after starting 1-for-11. USD shot 52.7 percent (29-for-55) overall and 44.4 percent (4-for-9) from long distance. LMU turned the ball over just 10 times to USD's 18 but was out-rebounded 47-32.

The Lions had their hands full with Herman and Child from the start as they combined for 17 of USD's first 19 points to help the home side open up a 19-11 advantage at 11:29 of the first half. LMU was struggling from the outside, missing their first eight three-pointers, but made the adjustment and went inside, with two straight lay-ups by freshman Melanie Ysaguirre cutting it to 19-15. Still, the Lions could not stop Herman and Child as they scored 24 points in a row during one stretch as USD rattled off a 15-4 run to take charge at 34-19 and go into the locker room leading 37-24.

In the second half, the Toreros kept the pedal to the medal as they quickly built up a 20-point advantage at 28-48 with 15:01 to go in the game, thanks to a Brianna Estell jumper.

The Toreros maintained the momentum in the second half as they with stood several Lion runs, but the Lions never gave up as they were able to finally get the lead back down to single digits on a 63-54 on a Lisa Helmers three-pointer with 5:21 remaining.

San Diego refused to be denied on their home court as Child yet again hit a jumper that ignited a 9-2 run to close out the game and give the Toreros their third straight win over the Lions and snapping the five-game losing skid they were on.

The Toreros will return to action on Saturday as they host Pepperdine University in a 2 p.m. West Coast Conference game at the Jenny Craig Pavilion.

San Francisco - 81
Pepperdine - 75

San Francisco, CA - After falling behind 33-28 in the first half, San Francisco rallied in the second half to earn the 81-75 West Coast Conference victory over Pepperdine at War Memorial Gym on Thursday. The Dons (13-8, 4-2 WCC) hand the Waves (6-13, 1-5 WCC) their fifth conference loss.

Senior guard Dominique Carter double-doubled with 23 points, 16 of which came in the second half, and 13 rebounds. The double-double is the sixth of her career. Carter's career scoring total jumps to 1,671 and she passes LMU's Bryn Britton (1998-2002/1,662) for eighth place on the WCC All-Time list. She needs 32 points to pass Gonzaga's Ivy Safranski (1991-95/1,702) for seventh. Carter has scored 20 or more points in four of her last five games.

Sophomore forward Heidi Heintz earned the second 20 or more point game of her career with 21 tonight, along with five rebounds and three assists. Heidi last scored above the 20 mark in the triple overtime win at Colorado State, putting in 23.

Other double figure scores for the Dons were junior guard Shay Rollins (14 points, five rebounds, and six assists) and junior center Necolia Simmons (14 points, five rebounds and one assist).

USF and Pepperdine were fairly evenly matched throughout the contest, with the Dons edging out a 42-35 rebound advantage and a 3-point field goal advantage, .368 (7-19) to .273 (6-22). Pepperdine took the slight advantages in field goals, .456 (31-68) to .446 (29-65) and free throws, .875 (7-8) to .800 (16-20).

For the Waves, senior guard Dahpanie Kennedy led all scorers with 26 points, adding six rebounds and three assists. Junior guard Taylor smith scored 14 and sophomore forward Miranda Ayim scored 12 with seven rebounds.

USF continues WCC play at home versus Loyola Marymount. Tip-off on Saturday is set for 2:00 PM.