Boise State cruised to a 3-0 (25-17, 25-18, 25-19) sweep against Gonzaga on the first night of the Northwest Challenge Friday at Bronco Gym, in front of 859 fans. The Broncos moved to 3-1 on the season, while the Bulldogs fell to 2-3.
"It was a great team effort tonight," said head coach Shawn Garus. "We fed off the energy in the gym and played at a high level all night."
Fiona Jones led Boise State with 12 kills, and a .524 hitting percentage. Saddie Maughan also tallied double-digit kills for the home team with 11. Alisha Young, who led the Broncos in kills each of the first three matches, finished with nine to tie for third on the team with Liz Harden. Breann Nesselhuf collected a match-high 40 assists.
Boise State tripled Gonzaga's block total, 12-4, thanks in large part to Harden and Maughan who each racked up four.
Amanda Remy led the way with 12 digs for the Broncos. Jones and Kersti Whitney each recorded a service ace in the match.
Caitlin Cozad paced the Bulldogs with 11 kills. Denise Van de Mortel had a team-high 32 assists, and Allyson Powell posted a match-best 13 digs.
"We are right where we need to be heading into two tough matches tomorrow," Garus said.
The Broncos return to the court Saturday at 1 p.m. against No. 9 Washington. The Huskies opened the Northwest Classic with a 3-0 sweep of Portland State.
There will be four matches at Bronco Gym Saturday, starting with Gonzaga and Portland State at 11 a.m. After the Boise State-Washington tilt, the evening session features Washington and Gonzaga squaring off at 5 p.m. The host Broncos close out the round-robin tournament at 7 p.m. against the Vikings.