Cowgirls Fall to Aztecs, 60-51

March 10, 2010

LAS VEGAS, Nev. -

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The Wyoming Cowgirl Basketball Team (19-11 overall, 9-7 MWC) ended their run at the 2010 Conoco Mountain West Conference Championships with a 60-51 loss against the San Diego State Aztecs (19-10 overall, 10-6 MWC) on Wednesday night in Las Vegas.

"I think what we witnessed tonight was a tremendous basketball game," said head coach Joe Legerski. "Both teams came out and competed for 40 minutes, and every possession mattered. I thought at times San Diego State stepped up probably in the last three and a half minutes, made some big stops. We had our chances.

"With the experience of competing against San Diego State, I think it's a basketball game we'll learn from. It felt like playing the No. 1 seed out there. They create so many problems for you on the perimeter, plus on the inside. I'm just so proud of my team that, you know, we got off to a shaky start and then we came back and closed down the half down, too, still had a chance with a possession about three and a half minutes to go."

Hillary Carlson recorded a team high 25 points, along with a career high 18 rebounds. Her 18 rebounds equaled the MWC single game record set yesterday by UNLV's Jamie Smith. She was followed by Aubrey Vandiver with eight points and 11 rebounds, while Jade Kennedy added eight points as well. The Cowgirls shot 20-66 (.303) from the field, 4-20 (.200) from beyond the arc, and out rebounded the Aztecs, 43-37.

"Hillary Carlson was just huge tonight. She literally kept us in the basketball game. To have 17 at half, 25 total points, eight offensive rebounds, played 39 minutes. She really carried the load tonight and it was very important to keep her in the basketball game.

"I thought our heart showed tonight...Aubrey Vandiver had eight rebounds offensively. It gave us an opportunity when you're shooting 22%, a credit to San Diego State's defense, yet we just kept fighting and finding ways to just stay in the basketball game."

The Aztecs had four of their five starters in double-figures led by Quenese Davis. She had a team high 16 points, plus six rebounds. Jessika Bradley recorded a double-double with 11 points and 12 boards while Coco Davis and Paris Johnson recorded 14 and 13 points respectively. San Diego State shot 21-52 (.404) from the field and 16-19 (.842) from the free throw line.

San Diego State would score the first two baskets of the game, but an Aubrey Vandiver basket would get the Cowgirls on the board. The Aztecs would score the next five straight to make it 9-2. Wyoming answered with a 7-0 run to pull within two, 11-9. Jene Morris would hit a basket for SDSU to end a four minute scoring drought, and then the Cowgirls would score the next eight of ten points to take their first lead of the game at 17-15. They would increase that lead to four, 21-17, but San Diego State scored the next five points to regain the lead, 22-21. Their lead would grow to six, 29-23, with three minutes left in the half. Wyoming would score the last six of eight points, but still went into the lockerroom trailing, 31-29.

The Cowgirls were led by Hillary Carlson with 17 points and nine rebounds in the first half. They shot 12-29 (.414) from the field, but just 1-6 (.167) from the three-point line. San Diego State was led by Coco Davis with ten points and three assists. The Aztecs shot 13-29 (.448) from the field and 2-7 (.286) from beyond the arc.

San Diego State scored the first four points of the half to increase their lead to six, 35-29. A three-point field goal by Jade Kennedy and a free throw by Emma Langford brought them to within two, 35-33, through the first media timeout. Wyoming would pull even at 35 all, but the Aztecs would score the next two baskets to make it 39-35. Aubrey Vandiver hit a basket to end a small scoring drought and two free throws by Hillary Carlson brought the Cowgirls to within one, 40-39. Two free throws by Quenese Davis gave San Diego State a three-point advantage, 42-39, but Bec Campigli hit a three-point field goal to tie it up at 42. The Aztecs would score the next four of six to earn a two point lead, 46-44, with about eight minutes left in the game. Wyoming would chip away and went on a 5-2 run, including a Jade Kennedy three-point field goal to give the Cowgirls a 49-48 lead with just under four minutes on the clock. Unfortunately, the Aztecs scored the next four points to regain the three-point lead, 52-49. Some missed opportunities by the Cowgirls and free throws down the stretch would seal the victory for San Diego State, 60-51.