Cowgirl basketball knocks off San Diego State in conference opener

(Laramie, WY) – The Wyoming Cowgirls used a big second quarter to push ahead to a big halftime advantage and then held on late to open Mountain West play with a 62-54-win Tuesday afternoon at San Diego State. The Cowgirls led by as many as 21 points in the fourth quarter before an Aztec run late.

Allyson FertigandAlba Sanchez Ramosboth registered double-doubles in the win, marking the first time since Bailee Cotton and Marta Gomez in 2019, that two Cowgirls recorded double-doubles in the same contest. Sanchez Ramos scored 15 points and tied a career-high with 13 rebounds in the victory while Fertig added 12 points and 12 boards on the day.

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Wyoming (5-5, 1-0 MW) opened the game taking a 6-4 lead early on, heading into the game’s first media timeout. Out of the timeout, the Cowgirls hit back-to-back shots to push the lead up to 11-4 with just under four minutes to go in the first quarter. Later in the frame, after the two teams traded hoops, San Diego State ended the quarter with back-to-back hoops and cut the Wyoming lead down to 13-10.

The Aztecs (6-6, 0-1 MW) got the opening hoop of the second quarter but after that, it was all Cowgirls in the frame, as UW ended the half on a 19-4 run over the final 7:50 of the second and led 32-16 at the break.

Leading 16-12 coming out of the second quarter media timeout, that’s when the Cowgirls found their offensive rhythm, thanks in large part to four 3-pointers over the half’s final 4:49.Quinn Weidemannhit a pair of those 3-pointers over that span, withMcKinley BradshawandAlba Sanchez Ramoshit the other two. Sanchez Ramos nearly had a double-double in the first half, scoring nine points and grabbing 11 rebounds in the first 20 minutes.

The third quarter began withTommi Olsonscoring the Cowgirls’ first six points of the half as they maintained the 16-point advantage at 40-24 with 4:29 to go in the third. Later in the frame, after the Aztecs cut the Wyoming lead to 46-32, back-to-back baskets from Weidemann pushed the lead back up to 18. Sanchez Ramos’ second 3-pointer of the contest ended the quarter with UW carrying a 53-34 lead into the fourth.

San Diego State made things interesting, thanks to a 10-0 run in the fourth quarter and cut the Wyoming 21-point advantage down to just 57-46 with 3:14 to play. Sanchez Ramos’ big 3-pointer the next time down the court for the Cowgirls ended the drought and pushed the lead back to 14.

The Aztecs did cut the deficit to single digits with under a minute left to play, but it was too little, too late as the Cowgirls, despite finishing just 2-for-11 from the field, salted the contest away for the eight-point victory.

“I was really pleased with the energy we played with from the start,” said Head CoachGerald Mattinsonpostgame.

“I can’t speak highly enough of these young women. They came out, executed and I thought we did a great job on the boards. Proud of our team and proud of our staff, what a great way to start. I thought offensively and defensively we played well.”

Weidemann also ended the day in double figures, joining Sanchez Ramos with a team-best 15 points. Both Sanchez Ramos and Weidemann hit a trio of 3-pointers in the victory. Olson added five rebounds, five assists and had 0 turnovers on the day, as she improved her national-leading assist-to-turnover ratio.

Overall, the Cowgirls shot 22-of-57 (38.6 percent) for the game and hit 8-of-22 from 3-point range. SDSU hit 38.3 percent of its shots (23-for-60) and went 5-for-17 from beyond-the-arc. The big advantage came at the free-throw line for the Cowgirls, who went 10-for-11 at the charity stripe while SDSU went just 3-for-6.

UW had slight advantages in most scoring categories, gaining the edge in points in the paint (26-20), points off turnovers (8-5) and bench points (8-4). The biggest advantage for the Cowgirls came in second-chance points (10-5) as Fertig had eight offensive boards to lead Wyoming in that category. For the game, the Cowgirls out-rebounded the Aztecs, 42-28.

Now, the Cowgirls shift their focus to the second game of this league-opening road trip. Wyoming faces UNLV in a 3 p.m., Mountain Time tip-off December 31.

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