Jan. 10, 2002
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Freshman reserve guard Quinn Thomas led the Santa Clara University women's basketball team to a 99-69 victory over Gonzaga to open the West Coast Conference season tonight at the Leavey Center. She was a perfect 5-of-5 from three-point range--tying a school record--and 7-of-7 overall for 19 points. Thomas added five rebounds in the all-round effort as the Broncos improve to 11-3 on the season, 1-0 in league play. The Bulldogs fall to 9-6, 0-1.
The Broncos continued their trend of having the outside touch when competing against the Zags at home. Thomas led Santa Clara to 11 three-point field goals on the night, two short of the school record, set against Gonzaga during the 1999-2000 season. Tonight's mark surpassed the next best shooting night from three-point land, 10 vs. Gonzaga last season. Individually, Thomas matched guard Becki Ashbaugh's 5-of-5 performance as a sophomore against the Bulldogs two seasons ago.
Both teams showed a lot of firepower in the first half, as Santa Clara made 63 percent of its shots, while Gonzaga followed pursuit with .516 mark. SCU was up 26-13 off a fast-break lay up by junior forward Tammy Annas eight minutes into the contest, but the home team allowed a 9-0 run by Gonzaga, capped by a three pointer from Jessica Malone, who led all scorers with 21 points.
A three-pointer by reserve guard Jennifer Bradley, followed by an easy two from teammate Courtney Cushing, put the Broncos ahead again by double digits with just under five minutes remaining in the period. The low-fouling half saw only four free throws attempted, and all were by the Broncos, who registered their second straight half of 100 percent shooting from the charity stripe. Last week at TCU, Santa Clara made 15-15 in the second half.
The Broncos extended their lead after intermission, holding Gonzaga to 9-27 shooting from the field. Sophomore Jennie Rondel added a career-high 16 points, while Ashbaugh scored 12 and dished seven assists. Additionally, SCU stole a season-high 15 times.
Santa Clara remains at home for continuing WCC action, hosting Portland on Saturday at the Leavey Center at 7 p.m. The Broncos will celebrate Middle School Madness and Girl Scout Night against the Pilots.