Feb. 7, 2004
Laramie, Wyoming -- The Wyoming basketball team (8-12 overall, 4-3 in the MWC) finished up the week with a heartbreaking 61-56 loss against the New Mexico Lobos (13-7 overall, 5-2 in the MWC) in Laramie on Saturday afternoon.
New Mexico jumped out early with a 6-4 lead, but the Cowgirls responded with nine unanswered to gain a 13-6 advantage. Despite UW maintaining the lead, the Lobos would score the next 12 of 19 to bring them within two,
20-18, but yet again the Cowgirls would run off seven straight to retake the 27-18 lead. Unfortunately, UNM came back with an 11-0 run to take the lead 29-27, while Wyoming went over seven minutes without a basket. They kept their composure though and closed out the half with a 7-4 run to take a 34-33 lead into the lockerroom.
Junior Ashley Elliott led all scorers at the half with 12 points, while shooting 4-6 from the field. Both Brenda Pickup and Kristen Lenhardt led the way with three rebounds. As a team, Wyoming shot 11-25 (.440) from the field and 8-10 (.800) from the charity stripe.
Forward Lauren McLeod was the leading scorer for the Lobos with seven, while Abbie Letz recorded five rebounds. New Mexco shot 15-29 (.517) from the field, along with out rebounding the Cowgirls 18-11.
A Brenda Pickup three-point field goal to start the second half gave Wyoming a 37-33 lead, which was quickly tied up by the Lobos. UW responded with two Tarah Lapar baskets to go up six, 43-37, but again New Mexico answered with a 10-3 run to regain a 47-46 advantage. That margin would grow to six points as the Cowgirls struggled offensively going over seven minutes without a basket. Despite being down, UW continued to battle with a small run which brought them within three, 54-51, but the Lobos seemed to have an answer for everything. With the score 57-51 in favor of New Mexico, the Cowgirls made one final push as a Kristen Lenhardt three-point field goal pulled them to within one, unfortunately their comeback would fall short as the Lobos would come away with the 61-56 victory.
"We knew coming into the game today that New Mexico presented problems with their size and depth," said head coach Joe Legerski. "That came true for us tonight as they kept bringing in players off the bench, while we were out there with six players trying to compete, and it starts to wear on you. I'm so pleased with the effort that we gave tonight. We've been trying to get the kids to understand that you have to compete every night, and I thought we competed tonight. We were in this game up until the final minute. We just have to have other players step up."
Three Cowgirls finished the night in double-figures, including forward Kristen Lenhardt. She scored a team high 14 points, while chipping in six rebounds and two assists. Ashley Elliott ended the game with 12 points followed by Brenda Pickup with 11. Pickup and Michelle Lieber also recorded seven rebounds for the game. UW shot 18-53 (.340) from the field.
New Mexico was led by Julie Briody as she finished the night with 20 points and four rebounds off the bench. The leading rebounder for the Lobos was Melissa Forest with 11. UNM shot 22-50 (.440) from the field and finished the game by out rebounding the Cowgirls 41-26.
Wyoming will hit the road next week with two tough match-ups to begin the second part of the conference season. They will face the BYU Cougars, on Thursday night at 7:00 p.m., in Provo and then take on the Utah Utes, on Saturday afternoon at 3:00 p.m., in Salt Lake City.