*Courtesy University of Wyoming Athletics Media and Public Relations
FRESNO, Calif. (Feb. 19, 2014) — Despite holding a six-point halftime lead, the Cowgirl basketball team suffered a disappointing loss, 65-60, against the Fresno State Bulldogs, on Wednesday night. The Cowgirls are now 17-7 overall on the season and 8-5 in the Mountain West while Fresno State improved to 15-10 overall and 9-5 in league play.
“Fresno State went small in the second half, taking out their 6-6 post player, which forced us to go small as well. After that, it became a game of pick and roll, switching everything, ball goes to the basket and it’s who can make a stop,” said head coach Joe Legerski. “We talked about not putting them to the free throw line and in the first half we did that, but in the second they went 18 times. I thought we could play small, but it became a situation that we had to make a few more stops, grab rebounds and Fresno made the plays which was the difference in the game.”
The Cowgirls would come out of the halftime break and extend the lead to eight, 28-20, with a basket by Jordan Sibrel. The Bulldogs chipped away at the deficit with a 6-2 run to close the gap to four, 30-26. Dent hit a field goal to end the run and Wyoming would build their lead back to seven, 38-31. Two straight baskets by Raven Fox jump started an 8-2 run by Fresno State making it a one-point game, 40-39. Four straight free throws by Landry helped UW regain a three-point lead, 44-41. The Bulldogs scored six of the next eight to take the lead since the first half, 47-46. Woodward hit a shot to give the Cowgirls a 48-47 advantage with 7:09 left in the game. Fresno State built a seven point lead, 55-48, as the Cowgirls went four minutes without scoring. Dent hit a basket to close the gap to five, 55-50, but the Bulldogs scored four of the next five to pull ahead by eight, 59-51. Fallon Lewis scored the next four points making it a four-point game, 59-55. Taylor Thompson hit a three with 42 seconds remaining that really seemed to seal the victory for Fresno State as they went onto win the game 65-60.
Three Cowgirls finished the night in double-figures led by Lewis. She recorded 18 points and eight rebounds, while shooting 7-15 from the field. Kayla Woodward recorded 13 points and a team high nine rebounds while Chelan Landry also added 13 points. Wyoming shot 34.4 percent (21-61) from the field, including 40.0 percent (12-30) in the second half, plus 81.3 percent (13-16) from the free throw line.
Thompson led the way for the Bulldogs with 18 points and 11 rebounds for the senior. Fox and Bree Farley each chipped in 13 points while Moriah Faulk finished with a team high 12 rebounds. Fresno State shot 51.6 (16-31) in the second half and 39.7 (25-63) for the game. The Bulldogs had 34 points in the paint and 21 bench points.
It was a tough go for both teams to begin the game as the Cowgirls started off shooting 1-14 (.071) from the field, while the Bulldogs were 3-15 (.200) but built an 8-2 lead. Wyoming would try and chip away at the deficit and closed it to five, 12-7. Two baskets from Fox made it a six-point game, 16-10. Started by two Landry free throws, UW ran off 13 straight points, which included two Woodward three-pointers, to give the Cowgirls a 23-16 advantage. A layup by Thompson would end a six minute scoreless drought for Fresno State followed by a Farley jumper made the score 23-20. Woodward hit another long range shot with 1:24 left in the half and Wyoming would take a 26-20 lead into the locker room.
Woodward led all scorers with nine points along with four rebounds. Lewis followed with eight points and six rebounds while Sibrel had four points and five rebounds. The Cowgirls shot 9-30 (.300) from the field and 4-7 (.571) from beyond the arc. Fresno State was led by Farley with five points and three rebounds followed by Fox and Smith with four points each. Jacinta Vandenberg . The Bulldogs were 9-32 (.281) from the field.
Wyoming wraps up the week by hosting the league leading Colorado State Rams, on Saturday, Feb. 22. The game is set for 2:00 p.m. in the Double A.