BYU women top No. 13 Gonzaga again, 66-64
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Shaylee Gonzales scored 19 points, Sara Hamson blocked two shots in the last minute and BYU ended No. 13 Gonzaga’s seven-game winning streak with a 66-64 victory on Saturday.
It’s the second time this season the Cougars beat the Bulldogs by two points.
After Hamson’s final block, which came with four seconds left and led to a shot-clock violation, Paisley Johnson was fouled setting a screen on the inbounds play and the 75-percent free-throw shooter made a pair for the win.
Caitlyn Alldredge opened the scoring with a 3-pointer, a sign of things to come for BYU. The Cougars were 6 of 8 from 3-point range in the first quarter in building a 24-13 lead to silence the sellout crowd of 6,000 and finished 10 of 15 in the first half to lead 43-36. Gonzaga was 1 of 2 from 3-point range for the game.
BYU (20-6, 11-3 West Coast Conference) never trailed with a big lead of 12 early in the second quarter.
Gonzaga (23-3, 12-2) pulled within two with 1:42 left in the third quarter and had a chance to tie before Gonzales made a 3-pointer and a buzzer-beating shot in the lane for a seven-point lead.
The Bulldogs tied the game for the first time on a Zykerea Rice jumper with 2:34 to go that made it 62-62 and again on a Jill Townsend putback with a minute to play.
Laura Stockton stole the ball with 33.4 seconds to go but Hamson, a 6-foot-7 sophomore, blocked Jessie Loera’s jumper in the lane. Stockton got the rebound and the Zags worked the ball around until Townsend’s attempt in the lane was blocked by Hamson. Townsend rebounded the ball and scored but it was after the shot clocked expired.
BYU advanced the ball after a timeout and Johnson set a backscreen in the lane, drawing a foul. After she made her free throws, Gonzaga couldn’t get off a final shot.
The Cougars won the first meeting 70-68 on Jan. 17, ending then No. 13 Gonzaga’s 12-game winning streak. BYU won two more games after that to run its winning streak to 11 before losing three-straight to put Gonzaga in control of the conference race.
Brenna Chase added 14 for BYU, which finished 12 of 22 from 3-point range.
Rice led Gonzaga with 20 points.