Wyoming Basketball Struggles In 69-53 Loss Against BYU

March 5, 2011

LARAMIE, Wyo. -

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The Wyoming Cowgirl basketball team (22-7 overall, 12-4 MWC) suffered a 16-point loss, 69-53, against the BYU Cougars (23-7 overall, 15-1 MWC) on Saturday afternoon in Laramie.

"I thought today's game was about missed opportunities," said head coach Joe Legerski. "We needed some of the free throws when we had the chance, the three's to drop, but I have to give BYU a great deal of credit. It seemed that every time we closed the gap, they always had an answer. With less than eight minutes to go, when we were down six points, we turned the ball over which resulted in transition points. I was proud the way our kids came out to compete, disappointed as always in the loss."

Two Cowgirls finished the night in double-figures led by senior Aubrey Vandiver. She recorded a team high 16 points and seven rebounds in the loss. She was followed by Hillary Carlson with 14 points and five rebounds, while Chaundra Sewell added nine points and six rebounds. Wyoming shot 19-52 (.365) from the field and 2-19 (.105) from beyond the arc.

The Cougars were led by Mindy Bonham and Jennifer Hamson who each recorded 18 points each. Hamson had a team high nine rebounds. BYU was 26-59 (.441) from the field while out rebounding the Cowgirls 39-32.

BYU took an early 6-2 lead to begin the game. The Cowgirls scored three of five to pull within three, 8-5. The Cougars ran off the next five points to take a 13-5 lead into the first media timeout. They would increase that lead to double-figures, 19-5, as the Cowgirls struggled offensively. A basket by Aubrey Vandiver would end a four minute drought for UW. That would start a 12-0 for the Cowgirls to pull them to within two, 19-17. The Cougars went almost seven minutes without scoring until a Jennifer Hamson field goal. BYU would increase their advantage back to five, 23-18. Wyoming would continue to battle and went on an 8-2 run to take their first lead of the game 26-25. The Cougars answered with eight of the final ten points to close out the half to take a 33-28 lead into the lockerroom.

Wyoming scored the first five points out of halftime to tie up the score at 33 all. The Cougars responded with seven of eight to regain a 40-34 lead. Chaundra Sewell would hit a basket to end the run and then a field goal by Aubrey Vandiver made it a four point game, 42-38. BYU went on a 7-4 run to extend the lead back to seven, 49-42. The Cowgirls battled back with five of the next seven to narrow the gap to four, 51-47. BYU scored the next six points to back up by double-figures, 57-47. Free throws by Aubrey Vandiver ended a four minute drought for the Cowgirls to make it 57-49 with 5:44 left in the game. Unfortunately that was as close as Wyoming would get as BYU closed out the game on a 12-4 run to earn a 69-53 victory.

The Cowgirls, who finished third in league play, will head into the 2011 Conoco MWC Championships as the third seed. They will get a first round by and play the winner of the six/seven game, on Wednesday, March 9, at 8:00 p.m. MT in Las Vegas. The full bracket will be released later tonight.