With two clutch threes to tie the game at the end of regulation, it seemed as though New Mexico women’s basketball team’s close-game misfortunes were about to come to an end.
The Lobos were able to dig themselves out of a hole and send the game into overtime with all of the momentum. Even with momentum on their side, foul trouble overwhelmed the Lobos (8-14, 3-8 MW) in overtime in an 86-80 loss to Boise State (14-9, 9-3 MW) at The Pit on Wednesday.
Head coach Yvonne Sanchez said that she doesn’t approve of the way that the new rule changes have affected the game.
“They changed the rules and they’re calling everything. I don’t think that we as a legislation or just as a women’s basketball program want to see this,” Sanchez said. “They wanted to see higher scoring, but no one wants to see such an extreme amount of fouls.”
In a game that featured 60 fouls, including one flagrant foul that sent redshirt forward Deeva Vaughn up the ramp early, the pace of the game was impacted dramatically by the referees. Seven individuals were forced to the bench early in the contest due to reaching the five-foul mark.
Sanchez said that she didn’t see anything malicious about Vaughn’s fifth foul, which was labeled as flagrant after a long deliberation by the refs.
“The official said that it was clear to him that Deeva saw the player and gave her an elbow,” Sanchez said. “As of right now, I would have to disagree with that.”
The first half of play seemed to be going in the wrong direction. After starting the game out with a 5-0 run, the Lobos couldn’t get in any type of groove in the first 20 minutes of play.
The Lobos could not seem to stop Boise State junior guard/forward Deeana Weaver in the first half either, as she scored 17 points in the first half. The Lobos went into halftime down 38-17.
It still took regulation heroics from UNM to send the game into overtime. Guard Sara Halasz couldn’t have picked a better time hit her first shot of the game to bring the game within one possession with only 39 seconds remaining in regulation.
Vaughn then was able to come up with a three to tie the game up at 65 apiece with just 2 seconds remaining in regulation.
Even with the huge 3-pointers, the Lobos could not overcome three players fouling out in the extra five minutes of play.
The difference in overtime was the number of times Boise State shot free throws. The team shot 14 of 15 in overtime, while UNM was only able to get to the line six times.
Even getting to the line didn’t always provide good things for the Lobos, as they hit just 52.8 percent from the charity stripe.
“We got to the free throw line and went 19 of 36. You’re not going to win games against any team doing that,” Sanchez said. “We came home and shot worse than we did on the road.”