Cowgirls Pick Up Big Road Win Over Bulldogs
The Wyoming Cowgirls accomplished something they hadn’t done in 23 years Wednesday night. That’s winning a college basketball in Fresno, CA.
The Cowgirls led from start to finish and beat Fresno State, 63-56. It’s only the third victory for Wyoming in the last 12 meetings against the Bulldogs. UW also won its third straight game and moved into a tie for fourth place in the Mountain West Conference standings.
Cowgirl head coach Joe Legerski was particularly happy with his team’s performance on one end of the floor in a released statement from the university.
“I thought the defensive effort was there all night long. We knew we had to step up. They do such a great job of putting the ball on the floor, attacking, and the biggest thing we talked about was we had to limit their threes. But more importantly, we had to keep them off the free throw line. Fresno State had six attempts at the free throw line. That was a big part of this. We were not going to foul, we had to move our feet defensively and make things difficult.”
Marta Gomez scored 15 points and grabbed five rebounds to lead the Cowgirls. Taylor Rusk and Quinn Weidemann added 12 points apiece. Wyoming shot 46 percent from the field. They went 9-16, 56 percent, from 3-point range. Weidemann made all four of her 3’s, while Gomez and Rusk added two each. UW also had 20 assists on 22 field goals last night.
Wyoming (12-5, 5-3) got out to a 7-0 lead in the first after both teams started slowly. The Cowgirls pushed their lead to 12-2 and eventually enjoyed an 18-9 edge at the end of the quarter. The UW lead reached 16 points, but it got trimmed to 32-21 by halftime.
In the third quarter, the Cowgirls maintained a lead around double figures, but Candice White of Fresno State hit a buzzer-beating three that cut it to 46-40 Wyoming at the conclusion of the frame.
The Bulldogs charge continued in the fourth, as they cut the lead to three, at 52-49. The Cowgirls went on a scoring drought of over five minutes until a Clara Tapia jumper with 1:28 left. Luckily for Wyoming, their defense stepped up and Fresno State went scoreless for over three minutes. UW made seven free throws in the final minute of play to stave off a Bulldogs rally.
Fresno State (13-6, 6-2) was led by White with 24 points. They shot only 36 percent in the game and went just 5-25, 20 percent, from deep.
The Cowgirls are off until next Wednesday, Feb. 6, when they host Air Force at the Arena-Auditorium in Laramie. Game time is set for 6:30 p.m.