Cowgirls Lose at the Buzzer

photo courtesy of UW Athletics Department, Natalie Baker had 12 points and 12 rebounds in the loss

by staff–14 Jan ’16

A three-point shot with seconds remaining by San Jose State’s Dezz Ramos sunk the Wyoming basketball team (9-6 overall, 2-3 MW) by a final of 67-66 against the San Jose State Spartans (6-10 overall, 4-1 MW) on Wednesday night in Laramie.

“Those are great games to win and difficult to lose,” UW head coach Joe Legerski said. “We put ourselves in a position to win this game and one of the things we talk about is executing for 40 minutes. We did a great job to be in it, the first five minutes we were shaky and relief when Natalie hit a three. As the game went on, we needed to make free throws and went two of four in the final 20 seconds. In the end, San Jose State makes a big shot. I thought we did what we needed to holding them to 2-of-16 from three during the game, they pulled up to win it and Ramos is a heck of a player. I look at opportunities lost for us but we did a great job.”

Four Cowgirl starters finished the night in double-figures led by senior Marquelle Dent. She recorded a team-high 20 points and seven assists in 40 minutes of action. Sophomore Liv Roberts and freshman Marta Gomez each had 14 points followed by sophomore Natalie Baker with 12 points and 12 rebounds. Wyoming shot 23-of-54 (.426) from the field and 13-of-18 (.722) from the charity stripe.

San Jose State was led by Ramos with a game-high 26 points while shooting 11-of-24 from the field. Junior Jasmine Smith had 14 points and seven rebounds while junior Riana Byrd came off the bench and added 13 points. The Spartans were 30-of-77 (.390) from the field and out rebounded the Cowgirls 48-38.

A 9-0 run to begin the third quarter gave the Spartans a three-point lead, 31-28. A basket by Dent started a seven point stretch for the Cowgirls to help them regain a 35-31 advantage. San Jose closed it to one, 37-36, followed by another eight Wyoming points made it a nine-point contest, 45-36. The Spartans closed the gap to four, 46-42 to begin the fourth quarter. Two key three point plays by Gomez and Roberts extended it back to double-digits, 61-50 with 5:21 on the clock. Over the next several minutes, SJSU chipped away at the deficit making it a two point contest, 64-62, with 32 seconds remaining. The Cowgirls had two chances to make it a two-possession game but missed free throws. With the score 66-64, Ramos drove down and knocked down a three to give the Spartans the 67-66 victory.

It was a low scoring affair through the first five minutes as UW took a 4-2 lead to the first media timeout. The two teams combined for a 3-23 shooting effort. The teams totaled 17 points the remainder of the quarter with the Cowgirls taking a slight 13-10 advantage. Wyoming built a six point lead, 20-14, but the Spartans cut it to two, 24-22, with 3:19 in the half. The Cowgirl scored the final four of six points to take a 28-22 lead into the locker room.

Baker and Gomez each had seven points each while Baker brought down nine boards. UW shot 10-of-31 (.323) from the field and 5-of-6 (.833) from the free throw line. The Spartans were led by Ramos with eight points followed by Byrd with six. SJSU was 10-of-41 (.244) from the field and out rebounded the Cowgirls 29-25.

Wyoming remains at home for its next contest on Saturday against the New Mexico Lobos. The game is set for 2 p.m. MT in Laramie.