No. 1 Bulldogs Set To Meet No. 3 Gaels In WCC Championship
March 6, 2017
GU Notes vs. SMC (WCC Champ)
SMC Notes vs. GU (WCC Champ)
No. 1 Gonzaga (25-6, 14-4 WCC) vs. No. 3 Saint Mary's (20-11, 13-5 WCC) (WCC Championship)
1:00 p.m. | Tuesday, Mar. 7 | Orleans Arena
TV: ESPNU (Play-By-Play: Paul Sunderland | Color Commentator: Mike Thibault)
Radio: Magic AM 790 KJRB Gonzaga IMG Radio Network
Live Stats | Watch ESPN
The Last Meeting
February 11, 2017
Stockton Drills Game Winner And Zags' Defense Seals Win Over Saint Mary's
SPOKANE, Wash. – The (RV) Gonzaga Bulldogs’ Laura Stockton nailed a game-winning jumper from the elbow with nine seconds left, and Elle Tinkle stood the Gaels up on defense at the other end as Gonzaga secured the 59-58 win in front of a sellout crowd inside the McCarthey Athletic Center on Saturday afternoon, in a battle between the two teams atop the West Coast Conference standings.
HOW TO WATCH
- The game is televised live on ESPNU and live online or using a tablet or mobile device using the WATCH ESPN app. The Zags last played on ESPN during the NCAA Tournament in 2015.
ZAGS ARE WCC TOURNAMENT TOP SEED
- The Gonzaga Bulldogs are the tournament number one seed and regular-season champion.
- The Zags have been the number one seed 11 times since the tournament began in 1994, including nine-straight times from 2007-2015. Santa Clara has been the number one seed five times, the next highest total.
- The Zags are 22-4 all-time as the number one seed, winning the tournament championship six times (2007, 2009-11, 2013-14).
- The Zags have reached the championship as a number one seed nine times, and have never won the championship as anything but a number one seed (6-3).
- The Zags overall all-time tournament record is 24-17.
- GU is 6-5 all-time in the WCC Championship game.
- The Bulldogs are 5-1 in the WCC Championship game since it moved to Las Vegas in 2009, their lone loss in 2012.
- Gonzaga has won five of the eight WCC Championships held in Las Vegas.
- Jill Barta set a new GU tournament record against Pacific in the quarters, shooting 82 percent from the field, going nine-of-11.
- The 91 points scored against Pacific in the quarterfinals is the second-highest point total for GU in tournament history.
- The Zags winning margin through the first two games is 31 ppg, 21 points higher than anyone else.
- Laura Stockton is leading the tournament averaging 5.5 assists per game.
- GU leads the tournament in scoring, points allowed, field goal percentage, field goal defense, assists, and assist/turnover ratio.
- The Zags lead all-time in the series, 39-27.
- GU got back on top in the series on January 14 of this year. A three-point play and jumper from Kiara Kudron and two steals and clutch free throws from Laura Stockton, plus a career-high 33 points from Jill Barta, gave Gonzaga an exciting come-from-behind road victory at Saint Mary's in that contest, 79-75.
- The Zags took game two at home on February 11. Laura Stockton nailed a game-winning jumper from the elbow with nine seconds left, and Elle Tinkle stood the Gaels up on defense at the other end as Gonzaga secured the 59-58 win. Kiara Kudron led the Zags with 14 points, five assists, and three steals.
- The Zags are 5-1 all-time against the Gaels in WCC Tournament games, and 3-0 since the tournament moved to Las Vegas in 2009.
- The teams have met once in the title game before, a 72-46 Gonzaga win in 2011. Courtney Vandersloot led with 18 points, 16 assists and even a blocked shot.
- GU has taken nine of the last 14 dating back to 2012.
- Prior the SMC's 66-63 win in Spokane in 2012, Gonzaga had won 17-straight games dating back to 2004.
SCOUTING THE GAELS
- The Gaels finished third in the WCC this season with a 13-5 record. They enter today having won five-straight games.
- They defeated BYU 59-49 in the semifinals.
- Sydney Raggio is leading them in scoring in the tourney at 15.5 points per game.
- Stella Beck (13), Megan McKay (11), and Raggio (10) all average double-figures on the season.
- The Gaels lead the WCC with a +11.2 rebound margin.
- With the win over USF, GU won their 25th game for the ninth time in 10 seasons, and 10th time in program history, including twice under third-year head coach Lisa Fortier.
KUDRON A LEADER IN MANY WAYS, NEW MEMBER OF 600 CLUB
- Redshirt senior Kiara Kudron has been a force on the glass, dishing assists, scoring points, and grabbing steals this season.
- She is averaging 9.9 points per game on the season, second on the team.
- Kudron also averages 7.7 rebounds per game, fifth in the WCC, and first on the team.
- She is second on the team behind point guard Laura Stockton with 93 assists.
- She has led the team in scoring eight times this season, led in rebounds 18 times, led in assists 11 times, and led in steals six times.
- She has three double-doubles this year, one behind Jill Barta for the team lead, and has six in her career.
- She is the 17th member of the 600-rebound club at Gonzaga with 634 in her career.
- Kudron is shooting 52.1 percent from the field, third in the WCC.
ETCHED IN THE RECORD BOOKS
- Elle Tinkle swiped six steals at Portland, a career-high, moving to 10th all-time at Gonzaga with 169 in her career, passing Kelly Bowen's mark by one. She now sits at 183 in eighth place.
- Tinkle had 61 steals her junior year and has 52 on the year so far this season.
- The redshirt senior is also first in all-time games played at Gonzaga with 141.
- Tinkle has played in 112 games that Gonzaga has won. She is tied with Jazmine Redmon, who won 112 games from 2010-2014.
- The Zags have scored 70 points in transition in the past eight games, and given up 10.
- GU has held their opponent below 10 points in three quarters this season on three different occasions. The Zags have held their opponent below 10 points in a quarter on 24 separate occasions this year already. Last year, the Zags' opponent failed to score 10 points in a quarter on 21 different occasions throughout the entire season.
70/59 IS THE SWEET SPOT
- The Zags are 16-1 this season when scoring more than 70 points.
- The Bulldogs are 20-0 when allowing 59 points or less.
- The Zags bench has outscored the opponents bench in 25 of the 31 games this season, including the last 12.
- They average 24.5 points per game, compared to 12.9 points per game for their opponent.
DEFENSE WINS GAMES
- The Gonzaga defense has led the way for the Zags this season. The Bulldogs lead the WCC allowing just 57.2 points per game, ranking 37th in the NCAA.
- They win by an average of 14.6 points per game, leading the conference and 19th in the country.
- They are first in the conference by limiting their opponent to 35.9 percent shooting from the field, 34th in the NCAA, and 27.0 percent shooting from three, best in the conference and 27th in the NCAA.
- GU is second in the WCC averaging a +8.1 rebounding margin, 14th among NCAA schools.
- The Zags are first in the conference with 4.8 blocked shots per game, which is 41st in the country.
- GU is first in the WCC with a 1.1 assist to turnover ratio, which is 67th nationally.
LOCKED IN UNDER THE LIGHTS
- The Zags are 9-1 this year in games that are televised live.
- They beat Saint Mary's, Santa Clara, San Francisco, Northwestern, Washington State, and Eastern Washington on SWX, Stanford on the Pac-12 Bay Area Network, and Pacific and San Francisco on BYUTV.
- GU was 4-5 in televised games last season.
- The entire West Coast Conference Tournament will be televised live on BYUTV.
BARTA MAKING A CASE
- Jill Barta was voted the WCC Player of the Week twice this season.
- In conference and tournament games, Barta is averaging 15.9 points per game, fourth in the league, in 26.2 minutes per game. She is shooting 44.6 percent from the field,
- She is 88-of-103 from the foul line, fourth in the league, and averages 5.7 rebounds and 1.2 steals per game.
- Barta has scored over 20 points six times in that stretch, and over 30 points once. Against Saint Mary's and Portland she went 10-for-10 from the foul line in each game.
- 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 has scored in double-figures in 16 of the 20 games, and led the Zags in scoring 12 times.
- She was featured as one of the NCAA's top-five players of the week, or Starting Five, on January 18.