Nov. 26, 2004
LARAMIE, Wyo. - With a last second three-point field goal by sophomore Tarah Lapar, the Cowgirl basketball team earned an exciting 55-54 victory over the Denver Pioneers, on Friday afternoon, in Laramie. Wyoming improves their record to 2-1 overall, while DU falls to 0-2 on the season.
It was a low scoring start to the game as the two teams combined for nine points through the first five minutes. Down by one, the Cowgirls went on a 10-4 run to take a 14-9 advantage. The Pioneers reached double-digits, but a Tarah Lapar three-point field goal put them back up 17-11. For the next several minutes the teams played very evenly as Wyoming continued to maintain their lead. DU hung around though and closed out the half with a small run but UW still went in to the locker room with a 31-24 lead.
Tarah Lapar led all scorers at the half with nine points followed by Erin Hicks with seven and Ashley Elliott with six. Hicks also led the team in rebounds with four. As a team, the Cowgirls were 11-28 (.393) from the field. Jenna Cole led the way for DU with seven points while Sarah Cyran and Brooke Meyer both had three boards.
Right out of the halftime break, the Cowgirls increased their lead to double-digits, 37-26, with a couple of Erin Hicks three-point field goals. Denver answered right back with six straight points to pull within five, while Wyoming went almost five minutes without scoring. After a Jodi Bolerjack basket broke the drought at the 11:05 mark, the Pioneers went on a 14-0 run to take their first lead of the game, 46-40. Erin Hicks managed to pull the Cowgirls to within three with a bucket, but Denver continued to increase their lead to 52-43. Down by nine with 3:40 to go in the game, it was desperation time for the Cowgirls and they came through. Four straight points by Hanna Zavecz along with a basket and a free throw from Erin Hicks and Lorissa Ewing tied up the game at 52 all. Two free throws by Venice Adams with 36 seconds left of go on the clock gave DU a two point advantage. Out of a time out and with eight seconds remaining on the clock, a three-point shot for LaPar would give the Cowgirls a 55-54 win.
"Tarah is a great shooter, and that shot at the end of the game was no bigger than the other three she hit during the game," said head coach Joe Legerski. "It was a great win for this program. When you take a look at both of these teams, we each play with young players. Those players need time, and you hope that your seniors can carry you through those rough times. I thought that Ashley (Elliott) had a nice first half, and kept everything calm even though she was in foul trouble. When we needed people to step up on the defensive end they did despite our struggles on the offensive end."
Two Cowgirls finished the night in double-digits, including junior Erin Hicks. She recorded a team high 18 points and eight boards, while dishing out four assists in 36 minutes of play. Tarah Lapar wrapped up her evening with 12 points as she was 4-7 from beyond the arc. Wyoming shot 19-53 (.359) from the field and 10-19 (.345) from the three-point line.
The Pioneers had three players in double-figures for the game. Venice Adams recorded a team high 15 points and six rebounds in 24 minutes of play. She was followed by Jenna Cole with 14 and Sarah Cyran with ten. Denver shot 21-50 (.420) from the field and out rebounded the Cowgirls 39-28.
Wyoming will now host the Northern Iowa Panthers on Sunday afternoon at 2:00 p.m. in the Arena Auditorium. The Panthers are 2-0 overall and will play Northern Illinois before taking on Wyoming.