It was a tale of two halves as the Utah State women’s basketball team lost to the visiting Wyoming Cowgirls 64-46, being outscored 37-21 in the second half.
Starting lineup contributions were limited Wednesday night, as the starters went a combined 7-26 from the field.
This was the second blowout loss in a row, after the Aggies were trounced 80-47 last week at New Mexico.
“Very few people believe in us and rightfully so,” said Aggie head coach Jerry Finkbeiner. “We’ve got to play the position of spoiler,” Finkbeiner said of future NCAA Tournament hopes.
Offensive success was difficult to kickstart as the Aggies failed to score for the opening four minutes of the contest. For the quarter, Utah State shot 4-10 compared to the Cowgirls’ 6-12.
Starting forwards Hailey Bassett and Shannon Dufficy would find themselves struggling early, shooting a combined 3-for-8 and both committing three fouls.
“Consistency has been our biggest opponent all year,” Finkbeiner said. “And this is another microcosm of our year: play a decent first half and the second half, the bottom falls out.
Wyoming would head into halftime leading the Aggies 27-24, shooting at a worse percentage (38.5 to 40.9%). It would be the Cowgirls’ 4-7 3-point shooting that would help to establish their lead, as well as outscoring the Aggies 10-4 off of nine turnovers.
“When they get open threes, they make threes,” said Finkbeiner.
Third quarter problems were apparent, as the Cowgirls went on an 8-0 run in the first two minutes of the second half, which put them up by 11 points.
The third quarter would end with Utah State being outscored 20-9, and the fourth quarter would add four more points to the Wyoming lead, sealing the 18-point victory.
“We’re trying to keep the team focused,” Finkbeiner said, adding his new team mantra of “keep investing so there’s no second guessing.”
With the loss, Utah State fell to 3-9 in Mountain West play and will go onto visit 7-4 Boise State Saturday.