March 4, 2004
Albuquerque, N.M. -- The Wyoming basketball team (9-17 overall, 5-8 in the MWC) fell to the New Mexico Lobos (19-7 overall, 11-2 in the MWC) by the final of 58-39 on Thursday night in Albuquerque.
The Cowgirls came out with the hot hand as they took the early 15-8 lead over the Lobos including eight of those points coming from Kristen Lenhardt. New Mexico would answer right back with an 8-2 run to pull within one, 17-16, with just under twelve minutes to go in the half. They quickly evened things up at 19, but a three point field goal from Brenda Pickup put the Cowgirls back up by three. Wyoming continued to maintain a small advantage until five straight from New Mexico gave them their first lead of the game 32-28. A three-point basket from Kristen Lenhardt brought the Cowgirls to within one unfortunately they would still go into halftime down 35-31.
Junior forward Kristen Lenhardt lead all scorers in the half as she recorded a career high 15 points, while shooting 6-8 from the field. She was followed by Michelle Lieber with six, while both Sara Hippen and Brenda Pickup had five points. The Cowgirls were 13-26 (.500) from the field and 5-13 (.385) from beyond the arc.
The Lobos were led by Melissa Forest who finished with 12 by shooting a perfect 5-5 (1.00) from the field. Several New Mexico players recorded three rebounds each. UNM was 14-33 (.424) from the field, while out rebounding Wyoming 21-11.
A New Mexico basket out of the half gave them a seven point lead, but then both teams went over four minutes with scoring until an Ashley Elliott layup broke the streak to make the score 38-33. In fact there would only be five points scored in a ten minute span as the Lobos took a six point lead, 40-34. With that same score, the momentum really shifted towards the Lobos as they scored seven unanswered while Wyoming's offensive struggles continued as they went over seven minutes without a basket. In the final minutes of the game, the Cowgirls couldn't overcome the Lobo deficit and their own shooting woes as they would fall by the final of 58-39.
Kristen Lenhardt led all Cowgirl scorers as she finished the night with a career high 20 points. She was 8-14 from the field and 4-8 from beyond the arc, while also leading the team with seven rebounds. Michelle Lieber and Sara Hippen both finished with six points. As a team, Wyoming struggled from the field shooting 16-55 (.291) for the game and 3-29 (.103) in the second half.
The Lobos were led by Melissa Forest who recorded 19 points and 15 boards for a double-double on the night. UNM was 21-54 (.389) from the field and 11-12 (.917) from the charity stripe.
Wyoming will wrap up regular conference season play on Saturday against the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs.