Kudron & Barta Tabbed All-WCC First Team, Lisa Fortier Named Coach Of The Year
Feb. 28, 2017
SAN BRUNO, Calif. – The Gonzaga Bulldogs had four players selected to the 2017 All-West Coast Conference Team, the conference office announced Tuesday. In addition, Gonzaga head coach Lisa Fortier was selected as the West Coast Conference Coach of the Year for the second time after leading her team to the Regular-Season WCC Championship for the second time in three years.
Redshirt senior Kiara Kudron and redshirt sophomore Jill Barta were both selected to the first team. Redshirt senior Elle Tinkle was voted to the second team and sophomore Laura Stockton was selected honorable mention.
Coach Fortier is the first coach in program history to be selected Coach of the Year twice in their first three years at the helm. This season, she led the Zags to a 23-6 overall record and 14-4 conference mark, as the Zags secured the outright conference title last Thursday night with a win over San Diego on Senior Night, her second title after winning it in her first season in 2014-15. This season she became the fastest coach in program history to win 50 games and the team won 20+ games, as she was the first coach in program history to do that twice in the first three years.
For Kudron, it marks her first WCC All-Conference Team selection, as she exploded to lead the Zags this season. She recently became the 17th member of the 600-career rebound club at Gonzaga, and has 616 in her career. She is shooting 50.7 percent from the field this season, third in the WCC. What has been most impressive this year, is her balanced attack, as she has led the team in scoring seven times this season, led in rebounds 16 times, led in assists 11 times, and led in steals five times. In conference play, Kudron averaged 10.7 points per game, second on the team behind Barta, and 7.8 rebounds per game, fifth in the league. She averaged 3.1 assists per game, second on the team behind point guard Laura Stockton and 11th in the WCC. Her assist/turnover ratio of 1.5 was eighth in the conference. She has three double-doubles this year, one behind Jill Barta for the team lead, and has six in her career. She was also selected the WCC Player of the Week on December 12.
Barta was selected to the first team for the second time in just two seasons with the Zags. She joins Heather Bowman and Courtney Vandersloot as the only Zags to do that in program history. This season in conference action, Barta averaged 15.7 points per game, fourth in the league, and 16.2 points per game overall. She shot 41.8 percent from the field and averaged 5.7 rebounds per game. Barta shot 85 percent from the foul line, fourth in the league and 45th in the country. She scored 20-plus points on nine different occasions this season and over 30 points once. At San Diego, she hit the game-winning shot at the buzzer, the first of her career, and made two foul shots with two seconds left to win at Santa Clara, 50-49. She scored in double-figures in 14 of the 18 conference games, and led the Zags in scoring 11 times. Barta was voted the WCC Player of the Week twice this season and has four double-doubles this year.
Tinkle, who was selected first team in 2015, returned from injury this season to lead the Zags once again. In conference action, she averaged 5.9 rebounds per game, 16th in the WCC, and two steals per game, fifth in the league. She now sits at 181 career steals in eighth place in Gonzaga history. The guard also finished fifth in the league in blocked shots per game at 1.1. The redshirt senior is also first in all-time games played at Gonzaga with 139 and Tinkle has played in 110 games that Gonzaga has won, just two short of the all-time mark. She is also third in scoring on the team at 8.3 points per game.
After a great freshman season, Stockton emerged as the team’s starting point guard this season and earned her first All-WCC nod. In WCC play, she averaged 4.2 assists per game, sixth in the league, and her assist/turnover ratio of 1.7 was fourth. She scored 7.9 points per game, fourth on the team, and shot 42 percent from the field in conference games, 14th in the league. Stockton recorded five or more assists in a game on 14 different occasions this season.
Tinkle and Kudron were also selected to the West Coast Conference All-Academic Team earlier this year.
BYU junior guard Cassie Broadhead was named the West Coast Conference Player of the Year, senior teammate Kalani Purcell earned Defensive Player of the Year accolades, and Loyola Marymount senior Jackie Johnson was tabbed the Newcomer of the Year. All four individual awards - along with the All-West Coast Conference Teams and the All-Freshman Team - were voted on by the league's 10 head coaches.
Of the 10-member All-WCC First Team, five appeared on the 2016-17 preseason All-WCC squad. Purcell, Jill Barta of Gonzaga and Lori Parkinson of Santa Clara are all making their second straight appearances on the All-WCC First Team.
All 10 West Coast Conference teams head to Las Vegas to compete for the 2017 West Coast Conference Basketball Championship and subsequent automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. Tournament action tips off Thursday, March 2 at the Orleans Arena.
Player of the Year: Cassie Broadhead, BYU
2016-17 All-WCC Women’s Basketball First Team
2016-17 All-WCC Women’s Basketball Second Team
2016-17 WCC Women’s Basketball Honorable Mention Selections
2016-17 All-WCC Women’s Basketball Freshman Team
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