Feb. 4, 2007
The New Mexico Lobos made it three wins in a row as they clawed their way to a 50-43 victory over Wyoming in front of 9,716 fans at The Pit. Junior Dionne Marsh led UNM with 16 points while senior Julie Briody added 12. New Mexico is now 15-7 overall and 5-4 in the Mountain West Conference. Being held to their fewest points of the season, Wyoming falls to 15-6 overall and 6-3 in conference play.
After taking a 54-51 victory last month at Laramie, Wyoming was trying to sweep the season series from New Mexico for the first time since 1995. The Lobos have now won 10 straight over the Cowgirls in The Pit.
The Lobos bucked a couple of trends in winning for the fifth time in the past six games. They had been 0-5 when trailing at halftime this year and 0-7 when scoring less than 60 points. UNM trailed 26-24 at the break.
It was all about defense in the second half as the Cowgirls made just four baskets in 18 attempts (22%) after halftime. They got just one bucket in the final 12 minutes, missing 11 of their last 12 attempts from the floor. They also missed the front end of two 1-and-1 opportunities. Additionally, nine of their 15 turnovers came in the second period.
The Lobos shot 55% (11-20) from the field in the first half, but missed six of their first seven shots of the second period as they fell behind 32-26 on a 3-pointer by Justyna Podziemska. A 7-0 run put New Mexico back in front at 33-32 following a pair of buckets by Marsh and a 3-pointer by senior Katie Montgomery.
A free throw and field goal gave the Cowgirls what would be their last lead of the game at 35-33. Montgomery hit a basket with less than nine minutes remaining for the Lobos' first field goal in more than five minutes. She added a pair of free throws to make it 38-35 in UNM's favor.
Wyoming got to within one on two occasions, but Briody sank six straight free throws and Marsh rolled in a short jumper with 1:05 left and a 48-43 advantage.
The Lobos jumped out to an 18-11 lead, but the Cowgirls responded with a 10-0 run as half of those points came courtesy of second chances on offensive rebounds.
Wyoming had a 14-11 rebounding margin in the first half, but UNM turned it around in the second half with a 25-18 advantage, giving them a 36-32 lead for the game. Junior Brandi Kimble led New Mexico with eight rebounds.
New Mexico won despite shooting just 24% (7-29) in the second half. The Lobos helped their cause by taking care of the ball after halftime, committing just three turnovers.
Podziemska led the Cowgirls with 11 points. Leading scorer Hanna Zavecz came into the game averaging 14.3 points, but was held to 4, tying a season-low. She had 17 against the Lobos last month in Laramie.
Montgomery scored nine points and is 14 shy of 1,000 points in her career.
The Lobos have a big road swing this week as they meet the top two teams in the conference. UNM plays at Utah Thursday night and visits league-leading BYU Saturday afternoon.