Friday's semifinal game against the Providence Friars was not much of a game as it turned out. Gonzaga's women came out on fire and put together lengthy, lopsided runs that devastated the Big East squad from Rhode Island.
A balanced high-low attack from guards Shannon Mathews, Rae Jewell, Katy Ridenour and Dominique Harris and forwards Ashley Burke, Ashley Anderson, Anne Bailey and Stephanie Hawk proved to be way too much.
The Zags won by about 50 points with everybody on the bench logging minutes, even Rachel Kane who is still waiting for her knee to completely heal.
But storm clouds were gathering on the Albuquerque horizon when the Lady Lobos took down a Missouri squad that went deep into the NCAA Tournament last season. And this was in the Lobos' homecourt, The Pit.
Saturday evening's championship game saw Shannon Mathews and Ashley Burke spark a quick start out of the gate for a substantial lead, then weathering a Lobo comeback to still retain a one point lead at intermission.
But with well over 10,000 rabid partisan fans cheering their home team on, the Lobos responded in the final 20 minutes by going on a big run, fending off a Gonzaga rally that narrowed it to 8 points with 10:00 to go.
Feeding off the crowd, New Mexico would race away to a 22 point win.
GU Nation congratulates Shannon Mathews and Ashley Burke for making the All-Tournament team. The Zags' next game is November 30 at Eastern Washington in Cheney, WA. Tipoff is at 7:00pm.