Cowgirls’ Five-Game Winning Streak Snapped by UNLV

Kevin DeVries, Athletic Communications Coordinator - Tennis, Volleyball and Women’s Basketball, University of Wyoming Athletics

Olson nets season-high 16 points in the loss

LARAMIE, Wyo. (Jan. 19, 2023) – The Wyoming Cowgirls couldn’t find their offensive rhythm during the middle portions of Thursday night’s game and a big UNLV run to open the third was the difference as the Lady Rebels defeated Wyoming, 71-57 in Laramie. The loss snaps the Cowgirls’ five-game winning streak.

Both teams got off to strong starts to open the night, as it was 8-8 in the game’s opening three minutes. The Cowgirls hit 6-of-7 to open while UNLV was 6-of-8 with a pair of 3-pointers and the Lady Rebels held a 16-12 lead at the first media timeout. Things slowed down a bit the rest of the quarter, as UW knotted things up at 18-18 with 1:41 left. UNLV got the last basket of the first and took a 20-18 lead after one.

The Lady Rebels extended their lead in the second, going up 26-18 to force a Cowgirl timeout with 7:22 left in the half. Following the timeout, Wyoming cut the deficit to 26-24 thanks to a Quinn Weidemann 3-pointer and three Grace Ellis free throws. UNLV would push the lead back up to 28-24 as the Cowgirls continued to miss outside shots. UW was just 2-of-12 from beyond-the-arc in the first half. Both teams would struggle offensively in the second quarter, as the Cowgirls scored just eight points and UNLV was held to 10. The Lady Rebels would hit a last-second, well-contested shot to end the half and carried a 30-26 lead into halftime.

In the third, Wyoming got the first two points via the free-throw line, but from there, the Lady Rebels would go on a big 15-0 run to extend the lead out to 45-28. The Cowgirls were held to just nine points in the third and shot 3-of-12 in the frame as they trailed 48-35 going to the fourth. Tommi Olson had seven of UW’s points in the third.

UNLV remained in control in the fourth mostly, as the Cowgirls cut the deficit down to eight, 60-52, with 3:22 to play. UW started to hit from beyond-the-arc and got the offense going in the fourth, but just couldn’t reel the Lady Rebels in late. 

“I thought we had some good shots early and then in the third quarter really stopped executing,” said Associate Head Coach Ryan Larsen postgame.

“At first, I thought we were really hesitant against their press. With everything we do, we need it to flow, it just flows, and it did not flow tonight and that led to some pretty quick shots from us and average shots. We did have those types of shots in the first half, we just didn’t make them and then it was kind of a snowball effect.”

Olson led the Cowgirls with a season-best 16 points, off which coming in the second half. Olson was 5-of-11 overall and 4-of -9 from 3-point range, one off of career-highs in both categories. Ellis finished the night with 15 points, nine rebounds and three assists while Weidemann also finished in double figures with 12 and hit a trio of 3-pointers.

The Cowgirls shot 38.5-percent for the game and went 8-of-27 from 3-point range. UW shot just 5-for-25 combined in the second and third quarters and went just 2-of-12 from deep in the second and third. UNLV, meanwhile, shot exactly 50-percent from the field and hit 5-of-14 from distance. The Lady Rebels also out-scored Wyoming 34-24 in points in the paint, 13-4 in points off turnovers and had 12 bench points to the Cowgirls’ six.

“We didn’t shoot it well, we’re a better shooting team than that. You got to keep your confidence up and really believe that the next one is going in, in situations like that. UNLV is a good team, they’re well-coached and have great players, but a lot of it was on us tonight. We didn’t execute well enough,” continued Larsen.

Wyoming has a quick turnaround now to flush the loss, as San Diego State comes to town Saturday night for a 6 p.m., tip-off.


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