The Wyoming Cowgirls could not overcome the hot shooting of Boise State in the second quarter in a 79-71 loss to the Broncos in the semifinals of the Air Force Reserve Mountain West Basketball Championship on Tuesday evening in the Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas. The loss saw Wyoming’s season-long six game winning streak snapped, as Boise State knocked down five three pointers in the second frame on their way to the win.
Sophomore Tereza Vitulova led the Cowgirls in scoring with 16 points, and paced the Cowgirls on the glass with seven rebounds. Vitulova has now reached double-figure scoring for the 22nd time this season, the 27th time in her career and for the fourth-straight game.
Sophomroe Quinn Weidemann scored 13 points, reaching double-digit scoring for the 15th time this season. The Omaha, Neb., product has reached double-digit scoring 15 times this year and in six of the last seven games. Weidemann added four rebounds, an assist and a steal.
Senior Taylor Rusk scored 14 points with three rebounds, reaching double-digit scoring four the fourth-straight game and the 14th time this season. She has also reached at least 10 points in a game 52 times in her career. Sophomore Alba Sanchez Ramos added nine points, five rebounds and a career-high three steals.
Vitulova opened the game’s scoring with back-to-back scores before the Broncos got on the board with a layup. The Cowgirls used a 5-0 run to go up 9-2, but Boise State scored off an offensive rebound to make it 9-4 with 5:43 to play in the opening quarter. However, the with the Cowgirls unable to score for over three minutes, the Broncos used an 11-0 run to take the lead, 13-9, before Rusk and Vaifanua scored back-to-back layups to tie the game at 13 apiece. The teams traded scores in the final minute, and the teams were tied at 15 after one frame.
Vitulova scored a hook shot to start the second period, but the Broncos answered right back to keep the game tied. The teams traded points until an 8-0 run put Boise State up 33-26 with 4:25 to play in the half, forcing a Wyoming timeout. Out of the break, the Broncos added six more before Erjavec scored a layup to stop the 14-point Bronco run. Boise State scored five of the next nine points, and the Broncos held a 44-32 advantage at halftime.
The Broncos grabbed an offensive rebound and scored to start the third quarter, and Sanchez Ramos scored a pair of kickstart a 6-0 Cowgirl run. The Broncos called timeout with their lead cut to 46-38 at the 7:57 mark. Out of the break, the squads traded points to a 56-50 Bronco lead with 2:46 to play in the frame. The Cowgirls scored seven more points, highlighted by a buzzer-beating three from Bradshaw, and the Broncos led 63-57 after three quarters.
The Broncos scored two layups to start the fourth quarter before Erjavec scored for the Cowgirls. Olson picked up a steal for a layup, and after a Boise State free throw, Vitulova scored two from the line, making it 68-63 for Boise State. The Broncos scored six of the next 10 to stretch the lead to 74-67, and Wyoming called timeout with 52.9 seconds to play. The Cowgirls started fouling, and the Broncos were strong from the line to take the 79-71 victory.
The Cowgirls will await a possible post season bid following the conclusion of the rest of the conference tournaments around the country.