Wyoming Wins Big Over Utah State

Dec. 17, 2006


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The Wyoming Cowgirl Basketball team improved to 8-2 overall in non-conference play as they earned a 19-point win, 62-43, over the Utah State Aggies, on Sunday afternoon in Laramie. Utah State drops to 2-6 overall.

"We made an adjustment defensively from the first half to the second," said head coach Joe Legerski. "We tried to be more aggressive in the first half and they did a good job attacking the basket when we tried to double-team them. So we went back to playing everyone in front of us, made them hit shots and to hold a team to 21 percent shooting in the second half really shows how well we did on the defensive end. We had a little bit of everything going in the second half and I was very pleased with the play of Justyna (Podziemska). She stepped up and made a lot of plays today finishing with 19 points, six rebounds and six assists. It was a tremendous effort especially playing in foul trouble all day. Rebecca Vanderjagt also gave us a nice lift off the bench. She played well defensively and made all of the right reads. We needed to get some people to step up and I thought they did that."

Justyna Podziemska led the way for the Cowgirls as she finished with 19 points, six rebounds and six assists in 30 minutes of play. Hanna Zavecz followed with ten points, while Megan McGuffey and Aubrey Vandiver both had seven. Elisabeth Dissen recorded a team high eight rebounds. As a team, UW was 23-54 (.426) from the field and out rebounded the Aggies, 43-29.

Two players finished the night in double-figures for Utah State. Taylor Richards led the way with 12 points followed by Jenny Gross with ten. Jamelah Brown was the leading rebounder for Utah State with five. They were 14-48 (.292) from the field and 1-10 (.100) from beyond the arc.

Podziemska would hit an early three point field goal to put the Cowgirls up early, but Utah State scored the next two baskets to give them a one point lead, 4-3. Wyoming evened it up at six and then went ahead 9-6 on a Jodi Bolerjack three-point shot. The Aggies answered with a 6-1 scoring run to go up two, 12-10, as the Cowgirls went cold going over four minutes with out scoring. Finally, they would score a couple of baskets to make it 14-12. Unfortunately, Utah State responded with a 5-0 run to retake the lead by three, 17-14. UW kept their composure and ran off five straight to give them a two point lead. The Aggies wouldn't back down as they battled back by scoring 6 of 10 to regain the lead, 24-22. Wyoming would hold Utah State scoreless the final three minutes of the half as they scored six straight to take a 28-24 lead in to the locker room.

At the midway point Podziemska led all scorers with 11. She was followed by Vandiver with four and three players with three points each. Dissen was the leading rebounder for the Cowgirls with five. Wyoming shot 10-28 (.357) for the half and just 4-10 (.400) from beyond the arc. Utah State was led by Richards with eight points followed by Gross with six. The Aggies were 9-24 (.375) from the field and 1-6 (.167) from the three-point line.

Out of the halftime break, Wyoming ran of six of eight points to take a 34-26 lead. Utah State responded by going on a 4-2 run to pull within four, 34-30. The Cowgirls went on a 12-3 run of their own to extend their lead to double figures 46-33. The Aggies went cold as they went almost four minutes with out scoring until a Gross lay-up broke the drought. After that both teams struggled on the offensive end as a free throw by Zavecz ended a two minute scoring lull for both teams which made it 47-35 in favor of the Cowgirls. It was never close after that as Wyoming out scored the Aggies 15-8 over the final seven minutes of the game, while holding them to only five field goals in the second half as they went on to the 62-43 victory.

The Cowgirls will play their final game before the holiday break on Wednesday, Dec. 20, as they take on the Denver Pioneers. The game is set to begin at 7:00 p.m. in Denver, Colo.