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Women's basketball: Lobos end Cowgirls undefeated streak

On Wednesday, Jan. 17, the Lobos took down the Wyoming Cowgirls in a 68-61 win. The Cowgirls were one of the two undefeated teams in the four conference games of the season. The Lobos are now 12-6 overall and 3-2 in conference play.

In a game where the Lobos missed seven of them, free throws were a huge factor in the game. The Lobos went 21-28 from the free throw line that came from constantly driving to the basket. The Cowgirls shot five free throws in the entire game and missed two.

From the three-point line, the Cowgirls shot 7-30 but made a couple late to keep the game close. The Lobos went 3-10 in the game.

Turnovers plagued both teams with the Cowgirls having 19 and the Lobos with 15.

Three Lobos were in double digit scoring. Nyah Wilson (#3) and Aniyah Augmon (#12) both had career nights with their scoring. Wilson led the team with 23 points and had four steals. Augmon scored 22 points and added five steals while doing a lot of damage from the free throw line going 9-13. Paula Reus (#30) had 12 points and two blocks in the game.

The crowd played a role in the game, Wilson said. She has scored 20 or more points five times this season with four of them being at home.

“I love the fanbase. They’re like family. I know after every game I can go to my little section and give them hugs; they’re always proud of me,” Wilson said. ”It’s just something about The Pit that brings out great energy and it just makes us want to play even harder.”

The Cowgirls were led by Allyson Fertig (#45) who dominated the paint in the first half and had 14 points and eight rebounds in the game. Malene Pedersen (#12) was close behind with 13 points and five rebounds.

The first half was back and forth between the two teams but the University of New Mexico was able to cut the lead to two – a combination of turnovers and not being able to defend the post sparked an 8-0 run highlighted by Fertig backing her way into the post on multiple possessions. The half ended with the Lobos down 38-31.

In the half, the Lobos gave up 11 turnovers and Wyoming capitalized – scoring 14 points. UNM was successful at attacking the basket, scoring 26 points in the paint.

The Cowgirls started the second half on a 6-0 run, which forced UNM to call a timeout with 8:21 left in the quarter.

Up until that point, the Lobos were not guarding the paint well. The Cowgirls were able to get into the painted area and pass out of a slowly approaching double coverage and get an easy layup.

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Out of the timeout, they changed defensive strategies, opting to double a Cowgirl as soon as she got into the painted area. Head Coach Mike Bradbury said this decision was made at halftime but was implemented after the timeout.

“Plan A was to go double, and we did that and Fertig killed us – not by scoring but passing, and our double team wasn’t as aggressive as it needed to be … In the lane, we got to have one low and one high, and we weren't there. The low person never got there, so that led to all those layups,” Bradbury said.

Lobos went on a 8-0 run that was sparked by an Augmon three-pointer, but it ended with a layup from Cowgirl Ola Ustowska (#30). But the Lobos continued to attack, getting layups and getting to the free throw line. Wilson hit a three-pointer to cap off a 9-0 run. With the clock expiring, Cowgirl Tess Barnes (#5) made a three-point shot from half court to put Wyoming back on top 51-48 at the end of the third quarter.

UNM tied the game with free throws and Hulda Joaquim (#14) took the lead with a three-pointer to put the Lobos up 56-53 with 4:31 remaining.

Vianè Cumber (#33) continued the Lobo run with a layup. Lobos continued to play suffocating defense and offense; Augmon made another set of free throws to go up 60-53 with Wyoming calling a timeout with 57.9 left in the game. Lobos forced a 7:47 scoring drought that ended with a Fertig post up, but Reus was fouled and put the Lobos back up by seven with 44.8 in the game.

McKinley Dickerson (#42) knocked down a corner three-pointer and Lobos called a timeout with 36.8 seconds on the clock and up 62-58. After the inbound, the Cowgirls immediately fouled Charlotte Kohl (#22) and she made two clutch free throws, but Pedersen knocked down another three-pointer. Augmon was fouled in the inbound and put the Lobos up by five with 18.8 left in the game.

Augmon stole the ball off the inbound and made a layup to secure the Lobo victory. The Lobos won 68-61.

The Lobos went on to upset #25 UNLV on Jan. 20 thanks to a Vianè  Cumber three-pointer buzzer beater to put the Lobos up 69-66 for the win. They will come back home to face Fresno State on Wednesday, Jan. 24.

Thomas Bulger is the sports editor for the Daily Lobo. He can be contacted at or on Twitter @thomasbulger10

Thomas Bulger

 Thomas Bulger is the sports editor for the Daily Lobo. He can be contacted at or on Twitter @thomasbulger10 

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