Broncos Fall Victim to Utah State Rally in 65-61 Loss in Women's Basketball?
BOISE, Idaho (2/20/09) Boise State let a 18-point first-half lead get away Friday night in a disappointing 65-61 loss to Utah State in Boise. The Broncos were on fire in the first 14 minutes running out to a 24-6 lead only to see it slowly disappear as the Aggies rallied for the victory.
The Broncos opened the game hitting 50 percent (9-18) from the floor including four 3-pointers to take a 24-6 lead with 5:45 left in the period. Senior Brittany Moore recorded 11 of her team-high 17 points during the run to lead Boise State.
Unfortunately, up a game-high 18 points it appeared the Broncos let up a bit as they made four careless turnovers in the final five minutes resulting in six Aggie points. That was only the tip of the trouble as Boise State went cold from the floor converting on only two-of-nine field goal attempts to close the half.
Meanwhile, Utah State amped it up taking advantage of the Broncos’ miscues to outscore Boise State 15-4 during the final five minutes of the period to cut their deficit to seven by halftime, 28-21. The momentum swinger was a Chelsea Burns 3-pointer with two seconds left that cut the Bronco lead to single digits at the break.
Boise State opened the second half by extending its lead to 12 points at 33-21 with 18:23 to play on a Melissa Rima layup and three points by Jenna Galassi. That would be the largest lead of the half by the Broncos as the Aggies began to chip away at their deficit.
Down 12, Utah State rolled off a 7-0 run to pull within five points, 37-32, with 12:42 to go. That was the beginning of a 19-8 Aggie scoring advantage over the next nine minutes as Utah State clawed back to within one point, 41-40, with 9:20 remaining.
The Aggies took their first lead of the contest, 43-41, on a Nicole Johnson 3-pointer from the top of the arc with eight and a half minutes showing on the clock. They never trailed again as the Broncos forced two ties down the stretch but could never fully recover.
Boise State had chances to pull out the victory until the end as they kept the game within reach, but unfortunately Utah State answered every Bronco rally attempt in the final minutes to claim the win.
Boise State shot the ball well for most of the night hitting over 40 percent during each half to finish at 42 percent (24-57) from the floor. They went cold from beyond the arc in the second half converting on only one of nine attempts eventually ending the game at 25 percent (5-20). Free throws were a relative rarity again tonight but the Broncos did make the most of their opportunities making eight-of-10 attempts (80 pct.).
Utah State struggled during the first half hitting 25 percent (8-32) from the floor, 11 percent (1-9) from the arc, and 44 percent (4-9) from the foul line. However, the second half was another story as they went 50 percent (18-36) from the court, 63 percent (5-8) from behind the arc, and a perfect 100 percent (3-3) from the charity stripe.
Brittany Moore led Boise State with a team-high 17 points to go with two rebounds and three assists. The only other Bronco in double-figures was sophomore post Janie Bos who finished with 12 points, four rebounds, four assists and one steal. Freshman Courtney VanBrocklin added eight points and three boards, while Jenna Galassi finished with six points and six rebounds.
Three Aggies recorded double-figure points led by Danyelle Snelgro’s team-best 17 points along with five rebounds, six assists and one steal. Ana Pares scored 14 second half points to finished with 16 in the game while adding six boards, one assists and two steals, Chelsea Burns chipped in 11 points.
The loss drops Boise State to 14-12 overall and 7-5 in WAC play, making their chances for repeating as league champions slim. The victory by Utah State completed their first ever Western Athletic Conference regular season sweep over Boise State as they improve to 12-12 on the year and 6-5 in conference.
Next up for Boise State is a home game versus Nevada at 2:00 p.m. (Mountain) Sunday afternoon in Taco Bell Arena as the Broncos wrap-up a four-game homestand.
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