Recap: #2 Stanford WBB wins Maples rematch with Gonzaga
On Sunday, #2 Stanford women’s basketball won their rematch with Gonzaga at Maples Pavilion by a final score of 66-50. Junior guard Hannah Jump led the way for Stanford with 21 points on 8-16 shooting from the field and 5-13 shooting from 3-point range while junior guard Haley Jones (15 points & 7 rebounds) and sophomore forward Cameron Brink (14 points, 16 rebounds, and 5 blocks) also finished in double figures. Sophomore forward Yvonne Ejim was the top performer for Gonzaga with 14 points & 4 rebounds. Stanford improves to 11-3 overall (2-0 Pac-12) while Gonzaga falls to 10-4 overall (1-0 WCC).
“The first thing I just want to say is how much I respect and am thankful for Lisa Fortier at Gonzaga for bringing her team to play us on a time that she didn’t have to and I just think it really shows a lot about her and their program that they’re willing to come in here on two days notice and play a game," Stanford head coach Tara VanDerveer said after the game. "We wanted to play and some of the Pac-12, it’s hard to get some of the Pac-12 schools. Some of them are in protocol, but kudos to Gonzaga and Lisa.
“Secondly, I think this was a really big game for us. We had a really good game against Oregon, so we didn’t want to let down and Hannah Jump really came out, playing at both ends of the court for us. Playing great defense, scoring, and I thought Cam is getting her stride back after being out last week. Scored in low, did a good job at the free throw line, rebounded, had a double-double. I mean, that’s 16 rebounds is great. Our team took care of the ball, which was a great thing, we didn’t send them to the free throw line, which was a great thing, and we got on the o-boards. So, I’m really excited about our rebounding and our not fouling and our taking care of the ball. That kinda summed it up for me.”
In what has become a pattern for Stanford as of late, they trailed in the opening minutes of this game as Gonzaga led 6-4 with 4:35 to go in the 1st quarter. Lexie Hull had all four points for Stanford. Gonzaga was shooting 2-5 from the field while Stanford was shooting an abysmal 2-15.
Stanford would once again finish the quarter strong to go up 17-12 at the end of the 1st quarter. Haley Jones was up to 7 points for the Cardinal on 3-6 shooting from the field and 1-2 shooting from the foul line. As for Gonzaga, junior guard Kayleigh Truong was up to 5 points after banking in a 3-pointer to beat the buzzer. It was a really impressive shot that found its way into the hoop.
Stanford would start to gain separation up 31-17 with 5:27 to go in the first half. Jones was now up to 9 points on 4-8 shooting from the field, getting a really pretty finish inside. Jump was to 8 points on 3-6 shooting from the field and 2-5 shooting from deep while Brink was doing her thing with 6 points, 6 rebounds, and 2 blocks. All three players were making a real impact for the Cardinal.
At halftime, Stanford led 33-24. Gonzaga kept finding ways to beat the buzzer as Ejim converted a 3-point play with less than one second on the clock. She was up to 8 points. Jones’ 9 points led Stanford. It was overall a good half for Stanford, but Gonzaga was hanging around, finishing the half on a 7-0 run.
In the 3rd quarter, Stanford started to gain more separation as they led 50-33 with 2:51 to go in the quarter. Jump was now up to 15 points on 6-11 shooting from the field and 3-8 shooting from 3-point range. Jones was up to 11 points. Stanford was winning the 3rd quarter 17-9.
“I think the coaches give me confidence every day,” Jump said. “Always reminding me to shoot the ball whether I’m hot or not. So I think just playing for my teammates and getting the support of my coaches really helps with the confidence factor.”
At the end of the 3rd quarter, Stanford led 52-37. Stanford’s 39-29 rebounding advantage on the glass was making a real difference. Jump’s 15 points was leading Stanford while Ejim’s 14 points was leading Gonzaga.
“Yeah, I think it’s a free shot at another possession,” Brink said of the offensive rebounding. “So, I think getting o-board, kicking it out to Hannah, like that’s some of the best attempts she can get from three. Kicking it back out because she’s wide open. And yeah, Tara loves o-boards.”
Rather than putting Gonzaga away to start the 4th quarter, Stanford allowed the Zags to creep back into the game a bit as it was a 55-43 game with 5:20 to go. Stanford had 0 points in the last 3:01, missing their last six shots.
Following a timeout, Stanford regrouped and proceeded to put the Zags away for good as they would lead 62-47 with 1:54 to go. Jump was up to 21 points while Brink picked up her 5th block of the game, taking away a scoring opportunity from Gonzaga. Stanford now had the game in the bag.
“As a freshman, Hannah, I always knew she could shoot, I watched her right at Pinewood,” VanDerveer said of the growth she’s seen in Jump. “But she’s really expanded her game. And I was gonna say this, Hannah, she’s a worker. That’s something that she could have been discouraged, she could have been frustrated, whatever; but instead she worked, she’s the first one in the gym, she’s the last one to leave, she’s works extra in the summer, she’s improved her conditioning, I mean, she can just go all day. Her defense has improved a lot and now I’m trying to get her really to get on the glass and rebound. But obviously her offensive skills, she helps space the floor and she’s just improved a lot and our confidence in her has improved a lot. So, we like any shot she takes out there.”
In the end, Stanford walked out with a 66-50 victory. Which was more decisive than their 66-62 victory in Spokane in November. It was also more decisive than I thought it would be as I predicted a 72-62 victory. The big difference maker was Cameron Brink. After having a quiet first game back against Oregon on Friday, she stepped up big time in this game and looked a lot more like what we saw from her in the Bahamas.
“So I was just out with COVID and I think it’s just kind of like a conditioning thing,” Brink said of her bounce back performance. “But yeah, I think my teammates really encouraged me, Tara was encouraging me on the sideline, and it was a better day for sure.”
“Well, that was really really early in the season and on top of that Haley was hurt in that game,” VanDerveer said of the difference between this win and the win in Spokane. “They packed their place. It was the loudest gym ever. I mean that and South Carolina. You could not hear yourself think. We got in foul trouble up there, we sent them to the free throw line a lot, we turned it over, and we didn’t o-board and we did those three things really well this time. We didn’t shoot the ball as well as we’re capable of shooting the ball, but I think sometimes you just have nights like that. So, the fact that people were really aggressive on the o-boards I think really helped.
“Also I think because we had played them before, I think we do really well a second time because our team really knows scouting report and can take things away. Especially on 33. She ended up with 8 points. But like no one really played a great game against us. I thought 15 had the best game for them, but I think our defense really locked down on them.”
Up next for Stanford is a road trip to the mountain schools, where they’ll first meet Colorado on Friday. That game will tipoff at 6:00 PM PT on Pac-12 Networks and Varsity Network radio.
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