SPOKANE, Wash. – Gonzaga University women’s basketball junior Lindsay Sherbert scored a career-high 22 points and senior Haiden Palmer added a double-double of 11 points and 10 rebounds as the No. 24/24 Bulldogs rolled to an 81-31 victory over visiting Colgate University Saturday afternoon at the McCarthey Athletic Center.
“That was a good win, that’s a good, solid win,” explained Gonzaga head coach Kelly Graves after the contest. “That team is averaging over 73 points per game and to hold them to what we did I think was just a good defensive effort.”
It was the fewest points allowed in school history by the Bulldogs. The previous low by an opponent was 35 points, four different times and most recently Feb. 27, 2010 when the Zags held the University of San Francisco to 35 in an 83-35 victory. The 50-point win was also the fifth largest margin of victory in school history.
“I thought defensively we really came to play tonight, and it was consistent all the way through, which was nice,” stated Graves. “We didn’t have a letdown in the second half when we got a lead. We just stayed consistent defensively.”
Gonzaga (4-1) held Colgate (1-5) to just 21.2 percent shooting, hitting 11-of-52 from the field, including 0-of-12 from beyond the 3-point arc. The Bulldogs forced the Raiders to turn the ball over 26 times, had a season-high 18 steals, and scored 22 points off the visiting teams miscues.
The Zags once again used their depth to their advantage. All fourteen players saw action for Gonzaga, with all but two playing double-figure minutes and all but three scoring.
Along with Sherbert and Palmer, junior Sunny Greinacher hit double-figure points, finishing with a season-high 14.
It was Sherbert who paced the Zags to their 32-13 halftime advantage. The transfer from the University of California hit her first four shots, including three 3-pointers, and ended the opening 20 minutes with 11 points.
The Raiders were held without a field goal for the first 9:40 of the game and ended the half with five total field goals - one more than Sherbert hit total - and sank 3-of-4 from the charity stripe.
Gonzaga opened the second half with a 13-3 run that allowed the Bulldogs advantage to balloon above 30 points at 47-16. Palmer capped off the run with a 3-pointer, off an assist by Sherbert.
Sherbert was even better in the second half, sinking all four field goal attempts, including a 3-pointer, and was a perfect 2-of-2 at the charity stripe for another 11 points. It was her final 3-pointer of the game that broke her previous career-high – 20 points, hit twice during her time at California – and giving her the new number of 22.
“She had a really good game,” stated Graves of Sherbert. “It’s nice to see her have a breakout 3-point shooting night like she did. She finds a way to get it done.”
The Bulldogs largest lead of the contest was 52 points, hit when junior Maiki Viela sank a jumper with 1:37 remaining in the game.
The double-double by Palmer was the fourth of her career and second as a Bulldog. The 10 rebounds was one shy of tying a career-high. Palmer also finished with a game-high five steals.
After its 10-day break between games, Gonzaga plays its second game of a five-games-in-11-day stretch Monday. The Bulldogs host Fairfield University at 6 p.m.
“Tonight was a good start,” explained Graves of the first of five games. “We have Fairfield on Monday, and I’m telling you, there are a really good team with great tradition, so it was nice to be able to rest some people tonight and not overload them in minutes. If we can continue to play defense this way, it will go a long way toward helping us in this stretch — and any stretch.”