LAS VEGAS — The University of Wyoming women's basketball team's quest to win its first Mountain West Tournament title will have to wait at least one more year.
Boise State used a strong second quarter to surge past the Cowgirls 79-71 in the semifinals Tuesday night, snapping UW's six-game winning streak. After a promising first quarter where UW and Boise State went shot-for-shot, the Cowgirls trailed 44-32 at halftime after a dominant second frame from the Broncos.
Boise State, the three-time reigning tournament champion, defeated UW in the 2019 Mountain West championship game, and the teams split a pair of regular season meetings in 2019-20.
The Cowgirls were dominant in the paint all game, holding a 50-32 advantage in scoring down low, but went just 1 of 11 from behind the 3-point line in the game. Outside of a second quarter where the Broncos hit 73.3% of its shots, UW held BSU to just 18 of 49 from the field.
Cowgirls sophomore forward Tereza Vitulova carried over her strong second half performance Monday against Utah State into the first quarter against the Broncos, scoring six of the team's first seven points in a period that ended deadlocked at 15-15. UW held a potent Boise State offense to just 7 of 20 from the field in the first.
Boise State caught fire in the second, however, using a 14-0 run over a 4-minute span to propel itself to a double-digit halftime lead. Boise State hit 11 of 15 shots in the second, including 5 of 7 from behind the 3-point line. Boise State's A'Shanti Coleman scored 10 points in the second on a perfect 4 of 4 from the field. UW was outscored 29-17 in the period and did not hit a 3-pointer in the half.
A quick 8-0 run from the Cowgirls out of halftime cut BSU's lead back to single-digits, and a buzzer-beating 3-pointer from sophomore guard Karla Erjavec to end the third made it a six-point game heading into the final period. Boise State made its free throws later, however, sealing the Broncos win.
Vitulova led all UW scorers with 16 points. Senior guard Taylor Rusk finished with 14 points and sophomore guard Quinn Weidemann added 13.