Big Game From Woodward Not Enough For Cowgirls
Despite a double-doubles by Kayla Woodward and Fallon Lewis, the Wyoming Cowgirl basketball team suffered a 74-68 loss against the San José State Spartans on Saturday afternoon. The Cowgirls are now 11-4 overall on the season and 2-2 in conference action, while the Spartans 8-9 overall, 2-4 in the MW.
"At halftime, I was concerned with only having scoring from just two players and knew that others had to step up and contribute," said head coach Joe Legerski. "We also knew that we had to score 80 points tonight, which was also a concern where we were going to get those points and if there were enough possessions. When you rely on two players to carry the load that wasn't going to happen because they're not going to have 40 a piece. Out of the half, they slowed down and we had some other players pick up. Fallon played better, Jordan Sibrel hit some baskets, Chelan made plays, but we went 1-12 from the three-point line in the second half which was the difference in the game."
Woodward finished with her third double-double of the year with 24 points and 14 rebounds. She was followed byKaitlyn Mileto with 16 points while Lewis recorded 12 points and 11 rebounds. Wyoming shot 25-67 (.373) from the field and 9-15 (.600) from the free throw line.
San José State had three players in double-figures led by Ta'Rea Cunnigan. She recorded 27 points and five rebounds. Riana Byrd added 16 points and ten rebounds followed by Britta Hall with 13 points. The Spartans were 25-59 (.424) from the field and 17-19 (.895) from the free throw line.
A three-point field goal by Woodward got the Cowgirls on the board, which was answered by four straight by Byrd of the Spartans. The two teams traded scores over the next couple of minutes as it was tied up at nine all through the first media timeout. Out of the break, San José State scored five straight to go up 14-9. Wyoming came back with a 7-2 run to tie it up at 16 all. Free throws by Cunnigan stopped the run but Wyoming scored five of the next seven to go up three, 21-18. Byrd would hit a layup to make it 21-20 with 12 minutes left in the first half. After a basket by Rachol West gave SJSU a one-point lead, 22-21, both teams went cold from the field. A basket by Cunnigan ended a three minute drought by the Spartans and started a 5-0 run to give them a 26-21 lead. Woodward hit a field goal to stop an almost six minute scoreless stretch for the Cowgirls then hit a three-pointer to even up the score at 26 all and give her 19 in the game. A three by Hall gave SJSU a 29-26 advantage, which was answered by six straight by Wyoming to make it 32-29 Cowgirls with 1:04 in the half. Cunnigan tied it up at 32 all, but a three by Mileto with the clock winding down gave UW a 35-32 lead going into the locker room.
The Spartans stormed out in the second half and ran off seven straight to take a 39-35 advantage. Wyoming chipped away at the deficit and scored 7 of 11 to make it a one-point contest, 43-42. Fallon Lewis would score five unanswered to give them a four point lead, 47-43. A three by Hall stopped a three-minute scoreless drought for the Spartans and made it 47-46. Wyoming would build the lead back to five, 51-46, but San Jose State scored four straight to close it to one, 51-50. Over the next several minutes, the Cowgirls would continue to lead until a basket by Hall evened up the score at 57 all. Woodward hit a shot to put Wyoming back up two, 59-57, and then the scoring went back and forth until a three by Cunnigan gave SJSU a 65-63 with 3:59 remaining in the game. Sibrel got a nice pass by Mileto to tie the score at 65 all, which was answered by a Jasmine Smith layup to make it 67-65 with 2:34 left on the clock. The Cowgirls had several chances at the basket but the Spartans built the lead to four, 70-66, with under a minute to go. A layup by Chelan Landry would cut the lead to two, 70-68, but the Cowgirls didn't have enough time to overcome the deficit as they fell 74-68. The Cowgirls will return to action on Wednesday, Jan. 22, by hosting the Air Force Falcons. The game is set for 7:00 p.m in the Arena-Auditorium.