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Thread: Lady Zags Non-Conference Schedule is Now Posted

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    Default Lady Zags Non-Conference Schedule is Now Posted

    This topic deserves its own thread. Thanks to ZAB for bring it to our attention.

    From GoZags:

    Women’s Basketball Releases Non-Conference Schedule
    Gonzaga will face six teams that advanced to the NCAA Tournament last season

    SPOKANE, Wash. – Gonzaga women's head basketball coach Lisa Fortier announced her team's 12-game non-conference schedule for the upcoming 2021-22 season.

    The Bulldogs will face six teams that were part of the 2021 NCAA Tournament, including defending National Champions, Stanford.

    The Zags are also set to participate in the 2021 Rainbow Wahine Showcase on Nov. 26-28 in Honolulu, Hawaii, at the Stan Sheriff Center.

    The non-conference slate will feature five games at McCarthey Athletic Center, in addition to an exhibition matchup against Central Washington on Nov. 6.

    On Nov. 11, the Zags host Big Sky's Montana State on Nov. 11 before traveling to another Big Sky foe, Montana on Nov. 14. Overall, the Bulldogs hold a combined 27-27 record against the Montana teams.

    GU returns home for a matchup against Idaho State, a team that advanced to post-season play last season. The Zags hold a 6-2 record over the Bengals with the last matchup coming in 2019, which was a 70-51 victory in McCarthey Athletic Center.

    The Bulldogs will then host Stanford on Nov. 21. This will mark the 12th time in program history that the Zags have faced Pac-12's Stanford. The last time the two teams met in McCarthey was in 2019, when GU won 79-73.

    Gonzaga then travels to Hawaii for the Rainbow Wahine Showcase that features Utah, Eastern Illinois, and Hawaii after Thanksgiving on Nov. 26-28. The meeting against Eastern Illinois marks the first time the teams have met in program history. But GU is no stranger to Utah or Hawaii as this marks the ninth and fourth time they have faced, respectively.

    Returning from home the tournament, the Bulldogs host Wyoming, Washington State and Stephen F. Austin – all teams that made the Big Dance last year.

    Against the Cowboys, Gonzaga holds a 6-1 record with the series dating back to 1990. The Zags are currently on a six-game winning streak against the Mountain West team. GU is also on a four-game winning streak against WSU, with the series going back to 1984. The last time the two faced off in McCarthey was in 2019, when the Bulldogs won 76-53. The matchup against Stephen F. Austin marks the first time the two teams have met in program history.

    The Zags then close out the non-conference portion of the season at UC Davis and at Eastern Washington.

    Gonzaga holds a 3-0 record against UC Davis, but the two programs haven't played since 2008. UC Davis is coming off a successful season after making the NCAA Tournament in 2021.

    The Bulldogs close the road trip with a quick drive down the road to Cheney to face EWU. The Bulldogs currently have a 16-game winning streak and hold a 34-13 record against the Eagles with the series dating back to 1982. The game is also a little personal to Coach Fortier, as she will face her former college head coach, Joddie Gleason, who is in her first season at Eastern.

    Game times will be released at a later date.

    2021-22 Non-Conference Schedule
    Nov. 6 Central Washington (Exhibition) Spokane
    Nov. 11 Montana State Spokane

    Nov. 14 at Montana Missoula, Mont.
    Nov. 18 Idaho State Spokane
    Nov. 21 Stanford Spokane

    Nov. 26 ! Utah Honolulu, Hawaii
    Nov. 27 ! Eastern Illinois Honolulu, Hawaii
    Nov. 28 ! Hawaii Honolulu, Hawaii
    Dec. 3 Wyoming Spokane
    Dec. 8 Washington State Spokane
    Dec. 12 Stephen F. Austin Spokane

    Dec. 19 at UC Davis Davis, Calif.
    Dec. 21 Eastern Washington Cheney, Wash.

    Home Game
    ! Rainbow Wahine Showcase (Stan Sheriff Center)
    Article Link: https://gozags.com/news/2021/9/10/wo...-schedule.aspx

    For those interested in a complete (non-conference & conference) schedule here is the link: https://gozags.com/sports/womens-basketball/schedule

    My thoughts on the Non-Conference schedule are as follows:

    The Good
    - We play 6 teams (out of 13) which made last year's NCAA tournament (unfortunately which does not reflect this year's teams)
    - We play 3 Power 5 teams (All Pac-12)
    - We play 2 of the 3 Power 5 teams at home (including Stanford) and the 3rd we play on a neutral court (Utah in Hawaii).
    - The Lady Zags get to spend Thanksgiving in Hawaii.
    - The ladies have a 9 day break for Christmas between finishing with the Non-Conference schedule with Eastern and starting the WCC with USF.

    The Bad
    - We are a pseudo member of the Big Sky playing 4 Big Sky Schools in the Non-Conference Schedule
    - Gonzaga is not traveling out of the West Coast with our furthest trip East being Missoula. Not much travel prep for the NCAA tournament.
    - We are only playing 3 P-5 schools, not much room for error. Better win 2 out of 3 and show really good against Stanford if you want any chance to host in the NCAA.

    With an entirely new starting front court, the non-conference schedule sets the Lady Zags up pretty well. You play 1 exhibition and 3 Big Sky games (2 out 3 at home) before having to face the Stanford Cardinal. You play 2 of the 3 scheduled P-5 games at home with the third game on a neutral court in a tournament setting.

    With limited traveling, it sets up the large freshman class well to integrate into the student athlete life.

    I would like to have seen 1 or 2 more non-conference games against P-5 opponents. If you want to think of yourself as a Top-15 or Top-20 team, you have to schedule like you are a Top-15 team.

    What do you think Lady Zag fans, do you like the non-conference schedule?

    ZagDad

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    Did I miss this thread before? Zags have gotten some good early season competition in recent years by being invited to tournaments like the one up in Vancouver, BC and wherever it was that they played South Carolina last year. No such tournament this season (is that an exemption kind of thing where you can only do it every other year or something?). It's really nice for the Zags that they've had an off and on series w/ Stanford. Washington St. should be a decent game for the resume. At least w/ playing so many Big Sky teams they are getting 3 of the better ones in the 2 Montana schools plus last year's champ Idaho St., who gave Kentucky a scare in the NCAAs. Wyoming has been a competitive program. It's not chopped liver, but Stanford is the only opponent who really jumps out at you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by seacatfan View Post
    Did I miss this thread before? Zags have gotten some good early season competition in recent years by being invited to tournaments like the one up in Vancouver, BC and wherever it was that they played South Carolina last year. No such tournament this season (is that an exemption kind of thing where you can only do it every other year or something?). It's really nice for the Zags that they've had an off and on series w/ Stanford. Washington St. should be a decent game for the resume. At least w/ playing so many Big Sky teams they are getting 3 of the better ones in the 2 Montana schools plus last year's champ Idaho St., who gave Kentucky a scare in the NCAAs. Wyoming has been a competitive program. It's not chopped liver, but Stanford is the only opponent who really jumps out at you.
    The Lady Zags are playing in the Rainbow Wahine Showcase and get to spend Thanksgiving in the Islands. Unfortunately, no top teams. Our games are scheduled against Utah, Eastern Illinois and Hawaii.

    At first look, other than Stanford, if the Lady Zags can jell and get some good minutes out of their highly recruited freshmen, they probably will be favored in every game (except possibly Stanford and maybe WSU). The OOC schedule does offer six teams that were part of the 2021 NCAA Tournament, which may have little impact on this year's squad, but maybe it won't be too bad. However, the schedule does not offer much in the way of being able to pick up for a loss. If the Zags want any chance to host and play the round of 16 in Spokane, they need a good game against Stanford and better sweep the rest of the OOC schedule.

    BYU, in particular, will be a real bear in the WCC as they bring everybody back.

    ZagDad

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    Quote Originally Posted by ZagDad84 View Post
    BYU, in particular, will be a real bear in the WCC as they bring everybody back. ZagDad
    ZD, The real bear part stands out to me... agree on BYU... there are also 3 or 4 other teams capable of handling Las Zagas... if CLF and staff end up on top of the mountain in the WCC IMO it will be her best season coaching.... ever...

    To get there she will have to play newbies, who will have to perform to their capabilities... This is a strong talented INEXPERIENCED Team as you and others have noted, the schedule does play to allowing the newcomers to blend in and find their roles...

    The Question is how what will CLF see and how will she utilize the new talent?...

    Just My Opinion

    Go!! Las Zagas!!!
    "Learn from the past, Plan for the future, Live in the Now!"

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    I like it…

    Only on the road three times…. Montana, Hawaii, California
    If we take the time to visit EWU, we will have an opportunity to see them eight times in the OOC schedule.

    As for the opponents, need to get to 50% of them being from the P5s to be in the top 25…. 3 out of 13 isn’t going to cut it.

    Go Zags!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by bigblahla View Post
    The Question is how what will CLF see and how will she utilize the new talent?...
    I have been accused of being "anti" CLF and nothing could be further from the truth. Her conference and regular season records are unbelievable for a relatively recent head coach. She has continued to improve the recruiting bringing in higher and higher ranked student athletes. There are a lot of college Wbb teams who would love to have her and we at Gonzaga are lucky to have her as our head coach.

    That being said, there are a few issues I do take with CLF. Given the quality of the teams she puts together, her record in the WCC championships and in the NCAA tournament is not near as good as her regular season success would predict. I think that CLF and her staff are great game planners, but she is occasionally "out" coached at halftime by some of the more experienced coaches (particularly Jeff Judkins and occasionally Paul Thomas) and can be slow to make in game changes.

    Finally, I think that, for the most part, CLF tends to keep her freshman and some sophomores on the bench giving them clean-up minutes. The one exception that I can recall is the use of Laura Stockton, who saw lots of time on the court as a freshman on the 2015-2016 team and that did not turn out to well. Fans remember players like Chelsea Waters, "Z", and many others who blossomed as seniors when they got a chance to play on a regular basis, but they rarely saw the court before their junior or senior year. How far could they have developed if they saw more court time earlier in their career?

    This is a good year as there definitely is a shortage of experienced talent on this team. If there ever was a chance to get the young freshman out there and show what they can do in game situations, this year is it. As you said, will CLF be willing to back off of her well established tendencies and give the newbies the chance to shine?

    We will see next month.

    ZagDad

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    Quote Originally Posted by ZagDad84 View Post

    That being said, there are a few issues I do take with CLF. Given the quality of the teams she puts together, her record in the WCC championships and in the NCAA tournament is not near as good as her regular season success would predict.


    ZagDad
    As an outsider, I really see the lack of NCAA Tourney success as a major shortcoming. Especially considering she got them to the Sweet 16 (and just barely missed Elite 8) in her first go around. Since then, in 4 appearances only a single win, and that was against a dreadful opponent. I was at the '17 game against Oklahoma in Seattle, that was a fairly lackluster performance. Last year against Belmont, even lackluster is overselling what the Zags did. They might get a free pass for the year Stockton and Townsend got hurt right before the Tourney started, otherwise the performances have left a lot to be desired. It's happened enough that it seems to be a trend and not an anomaly. Not only that, but none of the teams that have beaten them in these last 4 appearances have made deep runs (Sweet 16 is the ceiling), and most of them got drubbed when they lost, so it's not a matter of them losing to truly elite teams. During regular seasons we've seen the Zags go toe to toe w/ some good P5 teams, including beating Stanford twice. So what keeps happening to the team in March?

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