After winning its first game in five tries Thursday, CSU women’s basketball was looking to carry in some momentum Sunday at Wyoming.
Instead, the Rams opened the game by missing its first eight shots and never recovered offensively in a 72-37 loss against the Cowgirls, the Rams’ second lowest scoring output of the season next to a 36-point performance at TCU in January.
CSU (8-19, 3-12) was led by freshman center Nya Mason’s 14 points – tying a career high – in its final road game of the regular season. The Rams remain in eighth place – second to last – in the Mountain West Conference standings.
Freshman guard Aubrey Vandiver scored 15 points off the bench for Wyoming (18-8, 9-5), which kept its fifth place spot in the league.
“We talked in the locker room that this might be a complacency thing,” Mason told the Colorado State Rams radio network. “Maybe today we didn’t come into it with the same attitude we’ve had in some games.”
The Rams struggled in the opening minutes against their border rival, shooting 0-for-8 to start the contest. The Rams did not score their first point until Mason knocked down a turnaround jumper more than seven minutes into the game.
CSU pulled within 13 points with five minutes to play in the half on a drive from freshman guard Emily Neal, but Wyoming responded with a 10-4 run to grab a 31-12 halftime lead.
Not much changed after the break, as the Rams had just four points in the first seven minutes of play in the second half, allowing Wyoming to build a commanding 44-14 lead.
Neal scored seven of her nine points in the next four minutes to give the Rams an offensive boost, but it wasn’t nearly enough to pull them back into the game.
Vandiver and junior forward Jodi Bollerjack, who finished with 12 points, continued to find their shots down the stretch as Wyoming built a lead as big as 37.
The Rams could not match the offensive firepower of the Cowgirls, who shot 45 percent from the field, in comparison with the Rams’ 33 percent.
Wyoming achieved its first regular season sweep of the Rams since the 1993-94 season.
Head coach Jen Warden said she thought the team felt the effects of playing several weeks with a depleted roster.
“I think, obviously, I was surprised,” she said. “But you take a look at the fact that we have a nine-player roster and five of those are freshman, and even senior teams have lapses. Our job is not to make this loss any bigger or smaller than it is.”
CSU will play its final regular season game of the year at home Saturday at 1 p.m. against UNLV. It will be senior day for center Marilyn Moulton and guard Justine France.
Women’s basketball beat writer Jeff Dillon can be reached at email@example.com.