March 7, 2012
LAS VEGAS, Nev. -
The Wyoming Cowgirl basketball team (12-16 overall) advanced out of the first roundof the Mountain West for only the fourth time with a 61-44 win over the TCU Horned Frogs (16-14 overall), on Wednesday afternoon.
"Coming into this tournament, we talked to the team that it's one and done," said head coach Joe Legerski. "You win, you advance; you lose, you head home. With so many young players in this program, was not quite sure what we're going to get.
"TCU is very talented and we've played well in conference play. I thought tonight we really stepped up. We asked that we needed to have more people than just one in double digits. We needed an answer from so many people."
Four of five starters finished the game in double-figures including freshman Kayla Woodward. She recorded 17 points and six rebounds in her 34 minutes of play. Kaitlyn Mileto followed with 12 points while Ashley Sickles and Alison Gorrell chipped in 11 and 10 respectively. Chaundra Sewell led the way with eight rebounds. As a team, they were 20-47 (.426) from the field and 9-19 (.474) from beyond the arc.
"I thought Kayla Woodward got us off to a good start in the first half. Kaitlyn played well especially on defense, but it was a complete team effort. That's what I'm happiest about. We took care of the basketball."
The Horned Frogs were led by Briesha Wynn with 12 points and ten rebounds off the bench. Chelsea Prince added seven points and two others with six. They shot 19-63 (.302) from the field and 3-14 (.214) from beyond the arc.
Ashley Colbert put TCU on the board first while a three-point field goal from Kayla Woodward got the Cowgirls in the scoring column, 3-2. After a basket from the Frogs, Wyoming scored four straight points to extend the lead to three, 7-4. Over the next four minutes, the two teams traded scores as the Cowgirls continued to hold onto a one point advantage, 11-10, through the second media timeout. Two missed free throws by Latricia Lovings preserved the UW lead and on the next possession Kaitlyn Mileto hit a three point field to extend the score to 14-10. The Frogs answered back with three straight baskets to regain the 16-14 lead. The Cowgirls struggled offensively as they went over seven minutes without scoring until a three point field goal by Ashley Sickles ended the drought. Her basket would begin a 15-2 scoring run to put Wyoming ahead by 11, 29-18. They would also play strong defensively as they held the Frogs scoreless in the final 5:22 to take a 32-18 lead heading into the lockerroom.
Kayla Woodward led all scorers with 12 points plus three rebounds. She was followed by Kaitlyn Mileto with eight points, while Ashley Sickles added five points and a team high four rebounds. The Cowgirls shot 12-26 (.462) from the field and 6-11 (.545) from beyond the arc. TCU was led by Ashley Colbert with six points and Briesha Wynn with four. The Frogs were 9-30 (.300) from the field and 0-4 (.000) from beyond the arc.
The Frogs hit the first basket of the second half to end a six minute drought for them. Wyoming responded with eight of the next ten points to extend their lead to 18, 40-22, with 14:31 remaining in the half. A three-point field goal from each team made it 43-25, and then the Cowgirls would answer with five unanswered to give them a 48-25 advantage. Antionette Thompson hit a basket to stop the run making the score 48-27 heading into the second media timeout. Out of the break, a free throw followed by a three-point play from Brenna Freeze put the score at 52-27. TCU tried to close the gap with by scoring eight straight points to pull within 17, 52-35. Wyoming went five minutes without scoring until a field by Chaundra Sewell made the score 54-35. The Frogs wouldn't go away as they scored 9 of 11 over the next three minutes to pull within 12, 56-44. The Cowgirls would hit free throws down the stretch to hold onto the 61-44 win.
Wyoming will now have a day off before playing in the semifinals on Friday against the top seed San Diego State Aztecs. The game is set for 12:00 p.m. PT and 1:00 p.m. MT.