Cowgirls move into finals/Cowboys open tournament today


University of Wyoming photo by Tony Babbitt

March 8, 2023 — For the third time in program history and the third time in the last five seasons, the Wyoming Cowgirl basketball team will play in the Mountain West Tournament championship game. Tuesday night in Las Vegas, the #2-seeded Cowgirls defeated #3-seeded Colorado State 65-56 in the semi-finals. Tonight, they will take on #1 seed UNLV, who beat New Mexico 71-68.

Tonight’s contest will be broadcast on WyoRadio’s 1360/103.5 KRKK at 7:30, with the tip-off scheduled for 8 p.m. Wyoming (22-9) is 0-2 this season against the Rebels (30-2), who won the regular season. UW lost at UNLV 73-67 on December 29 and 71-57 in Laramie on January 19.

“I’m proud of this group,” head coach Heather Ezell┬ásaid. “We came here with the mindset of finishing a business trip. We took care of business again tonight. I’m just really proud of the way all 13 of our kids were engaged. They worked as a group, they moved as one, and we were able to take care of business.”

Things didn’t start well for the Cowgirls, as they trailed for nearly the entire first quarter. But the game seemed to turn when UW’s Tommi Olson’s hit a 50-foot shot just before the first-quarter buzzer. Wyoming still trailed 19-16, but Olsen’s lift carried over to the start of the second quarter, with the Cowgirls going on a 9-0 run to grab a 25-19 lead. It was a lead they would never relinquish.

Wyoming led 32-25 at the first half break and held a 50-43 lead going into the fourth quarter. The closest CSU would get in the final quarter was five points.

The Cowgirl’s Allyson Fertig and Grace Ellis both recorded double-doubles in the win, with Fertig scoring 15 points and 15 rebounds. Ellis tallied 10 points and 12 rebounds. Malene Pedersen also scored in double figures with 14 points.

UW is 1-1 all-time in the Mountain West Tournament Finals, losing to Boise State in 2019 and defeating Fresno State in 2021.

Cowboy Will Also Play Tonight

The Wyoming Cowboys basketball team will take on New Mexico today in the Mountain West Conference Men’s Tournament opening round. Wyoming, 9-21 on the year, is the #11 seed, with New Mexico, 21-10, the #6 seed.

The two teams split their games during the regular season, with the Lobos winning 76-75 in Laramie and the Cowboys winning 70-56 in Albuquerque.

The game will be broadcast on WyoRadio’s 99.7 JACK-FM and at 4:30 p.m., with tipoff scheduled at 5 p.m.