Cowgirls Race Past CU

by staff–22 Dec ’15

Six players finished the night in double-figures on the way to leading the Wyoming basketball team to a 77-68 victory over the Colorado Buffaloes (5-6 overall) on Monday night in Laramie. The Cowgirls finish non-conference action with a 7-3 overall record and are on a four-game winning streak.

Sophomore Liv Roberts led the way with 13 points followed by Marta Gomez and Jordan Kelley with 12 each. Kelley also brought down a team-high seven boards. Marleah Campbell, Marquelle Dent and Natalie Baker recorded 11 points while Dent finished her night with eight assists. Wyoming shot 27-of-57 (.474) from the field and 17-of-25 (.680) from the charity stripe.

“To get this victory, we knew it was going to need a team effort,” UW head coach Joe Legerski. “The past month, we’ve had one or two players score in double-figures and tonight it was very balanced. With six players scoring between 11-13 points which showed the balance that we had. At halftime, we wrote a number on the board which was 16 and that was the offensive rebounds in the first half. You cannot survive games giving up that amount. We talked about committing to rebounding and did a better job in the second half. The biggest thing was in the third quarter when we really got rolling with a number of players shooting the ball led by Natalie Baker and Skyler Snodgrass. They fed off each other, the energy of the crowd and the run was the cushion we needed.”

Two Buffs finished the night with double-figures including Jamee Swan. She recorded a game-high 28 points nad 13 boards while Kennedy Leonard added 18. Colorado shot 26-of-72 (.361) from the field and out rebounded Wyoming 42-39.

The lead changed hands several times through the first minutes of the third quarter until a 9-0 run from the Cowgirls made it an eight-point game, 44-36. Free throws and a basket from Swan ended a three minute scoreless stretch for CU. An 18-8 run to close out the quarter gave the Cowgirls a 62-48 advantage. Baskets by Snodgrass and Roberts gave UW a 16-point lead, 66-50, but the Buffs responded with nine straight to close the gap to seven, 66-59. Wyoming regained its composure and rattled of six straight to extend it back to 13, 72-59, with 3:58 left in the game. Despite being outscored down the stretch, the Cowgirls held on for the 77-68 win.

It was tied at four in the early going until five straight by Colorado gave them a 9-4 advantage. Roberts hit one of two free throws to end a three minute scoreless stretch but the Buffs took an 11-5 lead into the first media timeout. The Cowgirls tried to close the gap and pulled to within four, 15-11, but CU closed out the quarter on a 5-1 run to take a 20-12 advantage. Two baskets to begin the second quarter made it a three-point contest, 20-17. After the Buffs built it back to a five point lead, a 10-2 run by the Cowgirls gave them the first lead of the game 27-25. Colorado regained a two point advantage, 29-27, but a late shot tied it up at 29 all at half.

Campbell led all Cowgirl scorers with eight followed by Roberts and Kelley with six. UW shot 9-of-25 (.360) from the field and 2-of-7 (.286) from three. Swan led CU with 11 points and nine rebounds. The Buffs shot 12-of-41 (.293) from the field and out rebounded Wyoming 28-18.

Wyoming will have a few days off for the holiday break and will return on Wednesday, Dec, 30 to begin league action. The Cowgirls will host the San Diego State Aztecs at 7 p.m. MT tip-off in the Arena-Auditorium.