Early road tests mark Zags WCC slate
Posted on September 10, 2013 at 5:31 PM
SAN BRUNO, Calif. – The West Coast Conference released the schedule for the 2013-14 women’s basketball conference campaign. Gonzaga University, looking to grab its unprecedented 10th-straight WCC regular-season title, begins action, Dec. 28.
“I think this could be the best and deepest the league has been since I have been at Gonzaga,” stated Gonzaga head coach Kelly Graves of the now 10-team WCC. “There is not going to be an easy game.”
The Zags begin the 2013-14 conference season playing seven of their first nine games on the road, including opening at Saint Mary’s College, who tied for third in league a season ago.
“It is not ideal to start with seven of nine conference games on the road,” Graves said. “However, you have to play everybody twice and it works itself out in the end.”
After their opening game at Saint Mary’s – set for Saturday, Dec. 28 - the Bulldogs will face new WCC member the University of the Pacific on Monday, Dec. 30. Pacific ended the 2012-13 season with a 27-8 overall mark, won the Big West Conference regular-season title with a 14-4 record, and made an appearance in the fourth round of the WNIT.
Gonzaga continues play on the road Friday, Jan. 3 with a contest at the University of Portland before returning to the McCarthey Athletic Center for its home-opener against BYU, Thursday, Jan. 9. The Bulldogs close out their quick homestand with the University of San Diego, Saturday, Jan. 11. The Cougars finished tied for third in the WCC in 2012-13, while the Toreros placed second and fell to GU in the WCC Tournament Championship contest.
A four-game roadtrip follows with games at the University of San Francisco (Fri., Jan. 17), Santa Clara University (Sun., Jan. 19), Loyola Marymount University (Thurs., Jan. 23), and Pepperdine University (Sat., Jan. 25).
The Zags then close out the conference season with seven of nine games at the McCarthey Athletic Center.
Beginning the stretch are four-straight home contests; Santa Clara (Thurs., Jan. 30), San Francisco (Sat., Feb. 1), Pepperdine (Thurs., Feb. 6) and Loyola Marymount (Sat., Feb. 8).
Games at San Diego (Thurs., Feb. 13) and at BYU (Sat., Feb. 15) end the road contests for Gonzaga.
The final 3-game home stretch includes Portland on Saturday, Feb. 22; Saint Mary’s on Thursday, Feb. 27 and Senior Day against Pacific, Saturday, March 1.
Gonzaga ended the 2012-13 season with a 27-6 overall record and a 13-1 league mark. The Bulldogs return 12 letterwinners, including four starters, from the squad that made a fifth-straight appearance into the NCAA Tournament, along with welcoming one redshirt and one newcomer.