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Thread: Lady Zag - South Dakota Tournament Thread

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2014

    Default Lady Zag - South Dakota Tournament Thread

    Though I would start a thread to discuss the South Dakota tournament, the site, the Lady Zag opponents and of course the Lady Zags. This is NOT a Covid thread, so please post your general comments on Covid to the "Gonzaga Student Athletes Follow NCAA Protocol". Thank You.

    With that out of the way, let's get this thread started with some articles on our Lady Zags:

    From the Spokesman Review:

    Gonzaga women face South Dakota road trip in bubble with no fans, family allowed
    UPDATED: Mon., Nov. 23, 2020
    By Jim Allen
    (509) 459-5437

    Three days before Thanksgiving, the COVID-19 pandemic dished out another thankless task to Gonzaga women’s basketball coach Lisa Fortier.

    On Monday morning, she had to tell her players that because of soaring coronavirus numbers in South Dakota, there would be no fans allowed at the inaugural Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic this weekend in Sioux Falls.

    The 21st-ranked Zags are scheduled to open the COVID-shortened season Saturday against Oklahoma. They will play South Dakota on Sunday and top-ranked South Carolina on Monday.

    For the players’ families, that meant no loved ones in attendance at games, not even a hug outside the Sanford Pentagon arena.

    For players whose loved ones had planned to make the season-opening trip, that was devastating news.

    “My family was going to be there,” said Melody Kempton, a junior from Post Falls. “Not anymore.”

    At least Kempton will get to spend Thanksgiving at home before flying to South Dakota on Friday. Most of the others will get a catered meal on campus, Fortier said.

    In a normal year, out-of-towners would have dined at the Fortier home.

    “But we’re not allowed to do that this year,” Fortier said.
    You know the drill, you got to click the link to read the rest:


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2014


    In an article in the Spokesman-Review, which I can't find again (sorry) they discussed some of the precautions our Lady Zags and the tournament directors are taking to try and keep our student athletes as safe as they can be.

    - The Lady Zags have chartered a larger plane so the players and staff have more room to spread out.
    - While permitted in the past, most of the high dollar contributors are not going to be allowed to charter out with the Zags.
    - Once on the ground, the Lady Zags will be picked up in a disinfected bus, that only they get to use to transport to the hotel.
    - The Lady Zags will have their own floor at the hotel and will be given access to their own conference room for meetings, meals, etc.

    Been watching some of the early men's games at the Bad Boy Mowers Classic. There have been no fans at the games as has been a recent change. Players and announcers are pulled back a little further from the court than normal. The announcers have plexiglass partitions installed between each announcer.

    There is no way to be 100% safe, but if you have made the decision that you are going to play, it looks like both Gonzaga and the Bad Boy Mowers tournament officials have done a good job at minimizing the risk.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2014


    Now some news on Lady Zag tournament opponents:

    South Carolina played at home today against College of Charleston and won easily 119-38 in front of 3,500 fans in an 18,000 seat arena. In reviewing the stats, nothing really jumps out except for the score, the shooting percentage of 59.8% and the 73!!! (Yes 73). Rest of the USCs stats are pretty pedestrian. 3-point shooting was only 4-13, free throw shooting was only 66% (but they took 47 free throws), 19 assists, 12 steals and 15 turnovers. Perhaps the biggest contributor to the blow-out score was the inability of Charleston accomplish much of anything against USC. They shot 17.6% overall, from three they were 1-23 (ouch), shot only 45.8% from the free throw line, gathered 28 rebounds (vs 73 for USC) and had 0 (your read that right "0") assists. If you want to look at the complete stats, gamecast and video you can click on this link:

    USC Game Write-Up from the USC Website:
    USC Game Summary Link:

    The second Lady Zag opponent that played today was Oklahoma where the Sooners lost at home 97-85 at home to the Houston Cougars in front of 657 people in a 11,562 seat arena. Houston led the game at half 46-44 but spent much of the 2nd half up double digits. The biggest difference in this game was the Cougars making 7 more 3s than the Sooners. The Sooners scored a bunch with 85 points, but it was the pace of the game more than any individual stat which led to the large number of points. Oklahoma shot a reasonable 41.7% overall but only 20% from 3 (3-15). The low number of 3-point shots is a little surprising since one of the nations most prolific 3-point shooters plays on the Sooner team. While the Sooners shot 82.1% from the charity stripe, they took 39 free throws and made 32. Thus, almost 38% of their points came from the free throw line. Oklahoma outrebounded the cougars by 9, 50-41, but only had 13 assists, 3 steals and 1 block when compared to 21 turnovers.

    Here is a comment from the UO Sooners Wbb Head Coach Sherri Coale

    I feel like we got a game in and it's nothing short of miraculous we got a game in here today," said OU head coach Sherri Coale.

    "We were affected by their (Houston's) physicality, their size and their speed, and we knew that was a very real possibility. All that being said, there were some really good things that we did. We scored it well, there was a little bit of a drought in the third quarter … We fouled a little too much - we've got to be better about that. We gave up some key offensive rebounds and we've got to be better about that. But there's not one thing that occurred that we can't take care of and I think for this team. The biggest thing is transferring what they do in practice to the game floor."
    Coach Coales noted the Sooners had trouble with the Cougars height, but while UH has two players at 6'5" neither starts and between them they only played 29 minutes. The next tallest cougars are 2@6'1" and 2@6'0". If UO had problems with the cougars height, just wait for the Lady Zags.

    Here is the game write-up from the UO website:
    You can see the entire team and individual stats here:

    I was able to watch the 2nd half of this game (thanks for the heads-up ZAB) and had a few thoughts. UO only suited up and played 8 players while Houston played 13 players. UO just looked like they could not push in the 4th quarter. Zags depth should help them considerably on Saturday. Madi Williams (#25), a 6'0" Junior Guard was obviously their best player. She is physical, can drive, pull-up for the short jumper and will put it up from 3 although she went 0-3 from long distance today. She made 7-8 from the charity strip but had 4 turnovers. The Sooner long range threat is Taylor Robertson (#30). She made 3-8 today and has a beautiful stroke. It is imperative to keep somebody in her face at all times because if she sees a glimmer of open space she will not hesitate to put it up and more times than not it will go in. You cannot play the "hope they miss" defense against Taylor Robertson. The bigs (if you can call them that) for the Sooners looked slow and flat footed today. The Wirth twins should have a field day.

    Lady Zags versus UO Sooners - Zags depth should prove to be a big advantage. UO starting 5 is not tall with 1 player at 6'1" (Simpson-Forward), two others at 6'0" (Williams-Guard/Forward & Gregory-Guard), one at 5'8" (Veitenheimer-Guard) and one at 5'7" (Robertson-Guard). On their bench the Sooners have a 6'2" and 6'3" players but they only played a combined 15 minutes today. The Lady Zags will definitely have the height advantage. I would expect to see the Zags trying to go inside continuously to exploit their height advantage. It will be interesting to see who CLF puts on Williams. I would expect JT will get the assignment as she is every bit as physical and I believe just as quick. My guess is that KT-11 will get the assignment of watching the 3-point specialist Robertson. She does not give up any height and is much quicker than #30. I expect GU to slow down the game with UO scoring maybe 50-60 points. If Robertson goes off and UO scores more than 70 points the Lady Zags could be in trouble.

    Only 3 more days to game day.

    Buckle up Lady Zag fans, it is time for the ride to begin.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Issaquah, WA


    At the half, South Dakota and South Carolina are tied 37-37...South Carolina trailed much of the 2nd quarter including by as much as 5 points at times...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Issaquah, WA


    The wheels come off for South Dakota in the 3rd quarter, South Carolina leads 68-48 after out scoring
    South Dakota 31-11 in the quarter...South Dakota only 1 for 14 from beyond the arc so far...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2014


    South Dakota reeled them back in during Q4 but too little too late.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Issaquah, WA


    South Dakota outscores the Gamecocks 23-13 but South Carolina wins the game 81-71...South Dakota ends up committing 25 fouls...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Issaquah, WA


    No. 21/20 Zags Gear Up for Season-Opener against No. 1/1 South Carolina

    Bulldogs take the court for the first time since March 9, 2020

    SIOUX FALLS, SDThe No. 21/20 Gonzaga women's basketball team will officially open the 2020-21 season Sunday, Nov. 29 against No. 1/1 South Carolina in the Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic at the Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls, SD.

    #21/20 GONZAGA (0-0) vs. #1/1 SOUTH CAROLINA (1-0)
    LIVE STREAM**Fee required | LIVE STATS

    - Gonzaga will open the 2020-21 regular season against #1/1 South Carolina in the Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic on Sunday, at 12 p.m. Pacific Time, in the Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls, SD.

    - It marks the fifth time in program history and the second time in the last three seasons the Zags have faced the top team in the nation. The last time GU faced the No. 1 team in the nation was on Nov. 22, 2018 when it took on Notre Dame as part of the Vancouver Showcase on Nov. 22, 2018.

    - For the second time in program history, the Bulldogs are ranked in the preseason Associated Press Poll. Gonzaga debuted at No. 21 in the AP poll earlier this month. Gonzaga also touts a No. 20 ranking in the USA Today/WBCA Coaches Poll; it marks the third time in history GU has been ranked in the preseason coaches poll and the second-straight season.

    - The Zags have won eight of the last 10 season-openers including each of the last two seasons. Last year, Gonzaga defeated CSU Bakersfield 92-48 to kick off the season. Then-freshman Kayleigh Truong netted a season-high 18 points in the victory.

    - The Bulldogs return three starters and nine letter winners from last season's squad that claimed the Zags' fourth consecutive West Coast Conference regular season title.

    - In 2019-20, Gonzaga rose to its highest regular-season national ranking ever, securing a No. 11 AP and No. 10 ranking in the USA Today/WBCA Coaches Poll. Prior to the cancellation of the NCAA Tournament due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Zags were predicted as high as a No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament and were expected to host the First and Second Rounds for the first time since the NCAA changed hosting rules for the tournament in 2014-15.

    - Gonzaga returns 79.1 percent of its scoring and 79.2 percent of its rebounding from last season.

    - Gonzaga returns as one of the top defensive teams in the nation from a season ago. In 2019-20, the Bulldogs ranked third in the nation in scoring defense, limiting opponents to 51.9 points per game.

    - The Bulldogs won 28 games last season, including a 17-1 mark in WCC play to tie their own record for wins in a conference season. It was the fourth-straight 25+ win season and 12th 25+ win season in the last 13 seasons.

    - This will be the first meeting all-time between Gonzaga and South Carolina.

    - The Bulldogs carry a 3-7 overall record against SEC foes with wins against Georgia, Ole' Miss and Texas A&M.

    - The last time the Zags faced an opponent out of the SEC was during the 2015 NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen; GU fell to Tennessee 73-69 in overtime.

    - South Carolina returns three starters and nine letter winners from last season's squad that finished 32-1 with a No. 1/1 overall ranking. The Gamecocks were predicted as the No. 1 overall seed heading into the NCAA Tournament prior to the cancellation due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

    - All three of USC's returning starters are on the watch lists for their national positional awards: Zia Cooke, Aliyah Boston and Brea Beal.

    - Boston, the reigning National Freshman of the Year, is the top returning scorer for South Carolina (12.5 ppg in 2019-20), while Zia Cooke chipped in 12.0 ppg a season ago. Boston is also the top returning rebounder and shot-blocker for the Gamecocks.

    - Last season, USC averaged a school-record 82.0 points per game shooting 47.0 percent from te floor and 35.0 percent from long range. The Gamecocks led the nation in blocked shots per game, tallying 8.6 per contest, nearly 2.0 per game more than the next closest program.

    - South Carolina logged 10 games of double-digit bloccks a season ago, and it stayed on trend to open the 2020-21 season, recording 13 blocks against the College of Charleston on Nov. 25.

    - Victaria Saxton led all scorers in USC's season-opener, scoring 19 points on 7-of-9 from the floor to go along with 12 rebounds. Cooke added 18 points (6-of-11 including 2-of-3 from long range), while Boston finished with 11 points and 12 rebounds in 22 minutes of play.

    - South Carolina shot 59.2 percent from the floor and 30.8 percent from long range in the win.

    - Against Charleston, USC set multiple Dawn Staley-era records including:
    Margin of victory: +81
    Made field goals: 42
    Rebounds: 73
    Rebounding Margin: +45
    Defensive Rebounds: 50*
    Double-Doubles: 4 Players*
    Double Figure Scoring: 7 Players*
    *Also a program record

    - South Carolina's No. 1/1 preseason ranking marks the first time in program history the Gamecocks have opened the season atop both polls. USC's current No. 1 AP Poll ranking is on an 11-poll streak.

    - By the time the Zags take the floor against South Carolina, the Gamecocks will already have two games under their belt. USC opened the season with a 119-38 victory over Charleston--the second most points in program history. South Carolina faces South Dakota Nov. 28 in the first game of the Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic.

    - For the first time in program history, Gonzaga is ranked in both the Associated Press and USA Today/WBCA Coaches preseason polls. The Bulldogs were selected No. 21 in the AP poll and No. 20 in the Coaches Poll, the highest preseason rankings in history in both polls.

    - Currently, Gonzaga has either been ranked or receiving votes in the AP Poll for 39 consecutive voting weeks, dating back to Dec. 3, 2018.

    - Last season GU was nearly ranked in both polls, as it debuted at No. 23 in the Coaches Poll while receiving votes in the AP Poll.

    For the eighth-straight season, Gonzaga was selected as the favorite to win the 2020-21 WCC crown. The Zags, which have won 15 of the last 16 regular-season WCC titles--including the last four straight--received seven of 10 first-place votes for 79 points. BYU was selected second with 73 points and two first-place votes while Portland rounded out the top three with 64 points and one first-place vote.

    Senior Jill Townsend became the first Zag in program history to be named to preseason national award watch lists. The Okanogan, Wash., native has been named to both the Ann Meyers Drysdale Award Watch List (awarded to the top shooting guard in the nation) and the Women's Jersey Mike's Naismith Trophy Watch List, awarded to the nation's top player.

    - This was the second-straight preseason all-conference nod for both Wirth and Townsend.

    - Townsend, the reigning WCC Player of the Year, led the Zags in scoring at 12.3 points per contest and ranked second in rebounding at 5.6 per game. Townsend started all 31 games for the Bulldogs, shooting 49.7 percent from the floor and 41.1 percent from long range. The Okanogan, Wash., native was twice selected WCC Player of the Week last season, and she scored in double-figures 19 times on the season with two 20-point efforts including a career-high 28 against Loyola Marymount on Jan. 25.

    - Last season Wirth was selected First Team All-WCC for the first time in her career. The Mesa, Ariz., native led the Zags in rebounding at 6.9 per contest and ranked third in scoring at 10.8 points per game. Last season, Wirth recorded seven double-doubles (points, rebounds) and scored in double figures 18 times including two 20-point efforts. She finished the season ranked eighth in the conference in blocks per game with a team-leading 0.9, and she was twice named WCC Player of the Week.

    - The Zags' 2020-21 slate features seven non-conference matchups, starting with two games at the Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic.

    - GU's schedule features six teams that reached at least 20 wins last season, with two programs recording 30-plus win seasons: South Carolina (32-1) and South Dakota (30-2). Both South Carolina and South Dakota finished the 2019-20 campaign inside the Top 25, as the Gamecocks finished No. 1/1 while the Coyotes were 17/11 in the final polls.

    - Preseason No. 1 South Carolina highlights the Bulldog's non-conference lineup. GU is set to face the Gamecocks Nov. 30 in the final game of the Bad Boy Mowers tournament. This will mark the fifth time in program history--and second time in the last three seasons--that Gonzaga has gone head-to-head with the nation's top team.

    - The Zags' 2020-21 roster is similar to that of the 2019-20 roster that finished with a 28-3 overall record and a WCC regular-season title. The Bulldogs once again have ample depth at every position, and this season GU boasts a ton of experience with six eligible seniors on the roster.

    - GU returns 79.1 percent of its scoring and 79.2 percent of its rebounding from last season.

    - Gonzaga returns all six of its forwards from a season ago, including redshirt freshman Eliza Hollingsworth. The front court will be patrolled by seniors Jenn Wirth and LeeAnne Wirth, along with junior Melody Kempton, who combined for nearly 40 percent of Gonzaga's scoring output a season ago. Jenn Wirth leads the charge as the rising senior is fresh off a First Team All-WCC junior campaign. The 6-foot-3 forward led the Bulldogs in rebounding (6.9 rpg), blocked shots (0.9 bpg) and free throws made per game (1.9), and she ranked third in scoring at 10.8 points per game. She collected six double-doubles on the season to lead the Zags, and she scored in double figures 18 times on the year. Wirth was selected as the Gulf Coast Showcase Most Valuable Player, twice selected WCC Player of the Week, was All-WCC First Team, named All-WCC All-Academic Honorable Mention and was selected as a DI-AAA ADA Scholar Athlete.

    - LeeAnne Wirth averaged 8.7 points and 4.7 rebounds per game for the Zags, and the Mesa, Ariz., native shot 47.2 percent from the field to rank third on the squad and eighth in the WCC last season. She finished in double figures 12 times on the season and grabbed at least eight or more rebounds on four different occasions.

    - Melody Kempton ranked fifth in scoring at 7.0 points and tied for third in rebounding at 4.7 per contest for her sophomore campaign. The rising junior played in all 31 games, starting two, averaging 20.7 minutes per contest. The Post Falls, Idaho, native scored in double figures nine times with one double-double on the year.

    Anamaria Virjoghe returns as the tallest Zag on the roster at 6-foot-5. She saw action in 29 games, scoring 44 points and grabbing 58 rebounds on the year.

    - Gonzaga's Eliza Hollingsworth will suit up for the 2020-21 season after redshirting her freshman year. Hollingsworth is yet another Zag with international playing experience as the redshirt freshman represented Australia on both the U16 and U17 national teams, helping Australia to a Gold medal at the Asian Championships in Bengaluru, India in addition to a Bronze medal finish at the U17s World Championships in 2018. Hollingsworth joins a long list of powerful forwards at Gonzaga and looks to develop even more behind Jenn and LeeAnne Wirth.

    - Gonzaga's backcourt mirrors the strength and depth of its frontcourt, despite the departures of Katie Campbell and Jessie Loera. The reigning West Coast Conference Player of the Year Jill Townsend returns for her senior season at shooting guard after leading the Bulldogs in points per game (12.3) a season ago. Townsend started all 31 games for the Zags, and the Okanogan, Wash., native ranked second in field goal percentage at 49.7 and third in three-point field goal percentage at 41.4 while scoring in double figures 19 times on the year. Townsend was selected as the WCC Player of the Week twice during the regular season, and the finished the year ranked 14th in scoring (12.3 ppg) and 15th in rebounds (5.7 rpg) in the WCC. She also recorded three double-doubles on the season (points, rebounds).

    - Sophomore Kayleigh Truong, who stepped into a starting role following the season-ending injury to Campbell in early February, returns following a stellar freshman campaign. The Houston, Texas, native was named to the WCC All-Freshman team after averaging 6.0 points and 2.7 assists per contest last season; she added five double-figures scoring games, including a season-high 18 in her Gonzaga debut on Nov. 10. She proved herself as an outside shooter with the ability to create off the dribble.
    Kaylynne Truong also returns for her sophomore season after appearing in all 31 games of her freshman campaign. She ranked fourth in assists with 1.7 per contest and added 3.6 points per game. The Houston, Texas, native scored a season-high nine points on three separate occasions.

    - Vanderbilt transfer Cierra Walker is eligible to play for the 2020-21 season after sitting out last season due to NCAA Transfer rules. Walker, a redshirt senior, averaged 8.9 points per game shooting 39.1 percent from the floor and 39.2 percent from long range over her first three seasons at Vanderbilt. She ranked sixth in the SEC in three-point percentage (39.1) during her junior campaign in 2018-19 and also ranked seventh in three-pointers made with 70.

    - Senior Louise Forsyth provides yet another three-point threat. Forsyth hit 27 threes last season and shot 36.0 percent from long range. She finished with 107 points on the season and 52 rebounds.

    Gonzaga Article Link
    Last edited by TerpZag; 11-28-2020 at 03:01 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2014

    Default Hope for the Lady Zags

    Quote Originally Posted by TerpZag View Post
    South Dakota outscores the Gamecocks 23-13 but South Carolina wins the game 81-71...South Dakota ends up committing 25 fouls...
    It's great USD outscored USC by 10 in the 4th, but did not cover getting steamrolled by 20 in the 3rd quarter, include a 16-2 run. After listening to the USC after game press conference, the Gamecocks played several subs in the 4th quarter to get them some experience.

    I was going to watch the game but work intruded today, so all I have to go on is the USD and USC write-ups and the stats. In looking at the stats, the Lady Zags have lots to look forward to against USC.

    - Nothing spectacular with overall shooting with USD @ 43.3% vs USC @ 41.7%
    - Neither team bombed away from 3-point land with USD being horrible 12.5% and USC very average @ 35.7%
    - Both teams struggled from the charity stripe with USD @ 55.0% and USC @ 55.2%. Lots of free points left on the table.
    - Gamecocks expectedly won the rebound battle but not by much 45-37.
    - Surprisingly (at least to me) the Coyotes won the battle for points in the paint 50-42.
    - Both teams valued the ball with few turnovers; USD @ 8 T/Os and USC @ 9 T/Os
    - Correspondingly, the points off turnovers was equally close; USD @ 11 and USC @ 9
    - One of the biggest differences was on fast break points; Coyotes @ 11 and USC @ 27
    - The other major difference was in bench points; USD @ 9 and USC @ 24.

    Four (4) starters for South Dakota played over 30 minutes but only 2 players for the Gamecocks played 30 or more minutes, one which was a starter and one reserve.

    The game was a toss-up in the first half before USC went on their 3rd quarter blitz coming out from halftime. If South Dakota had hit an average number of 3s and/or shot a little better from the charity stripe, the game could have been theirs. Considering this was USCs second game and South Dakota's first. A very good showing and reason for a good amount of hope from the Lady Zags for their chances against the Gamecocks.

    Game write-up from the USD website:
    Post Game Interviews from USC website:

    On the USC website, click the video link for the press conferences. They interview a couple of USC players, USC head coach and USD head coach.

    Last edited by ZagDad84; 11-28-2020 at 06:54 PM.

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