Bronco Women fall to Fresno State in OT

Bronco Women fall to Fresno State in OT

BOISE, Idaho - Boise State rallied from 20 points down to force overtime before coming up short 78-72 to Fresno State in a Mountain West Conference women's basketball game in Taco Bell Arena Wednesday night. Boise State dug itself a big hole in the first half struggling to get shots to fall and found itself trailing by as many as 20 points. The Broncos then regrouped in the second period rallying from an 18-point halftime deficit to force overtime following a Yaiza Rodriguez Ortego jumper with 17 seconds left.

Unfortunately, Boise State came up short in the extra period. With the score tied at 72 with 1:22 remaining the Broncos committed three consecutive turnovers on its final three possessions. Fresno State responded by converting them into the last six points of the game to claim the 78-72 victory on the road to jump over the Broncos in the league standings into second place.

Boise State fell to 15-11 overall and 10-5 in conference play to move into a three-way tie with Nevada and Wyoming for third place. Fresno State improved to 17-10 on the year and 11-5 in league.

Yaiza Rodriguez Ortego came to life in the second half scoring all 15 of her team-high points after halftime, including four 3-pointers which helped the Broncos rally. Miquelle Askew and Deanna Weaver were close behind with 13 points each, while Askew tied Lexie Der for rebounding honors with seven.

Der added eight points to her rebound total, followed by Keiahnna Engel with seven points, as well as six each from Kayla Reinhart and Brooke Pahukoa.

Boise State finished the night shooting 39.7 percent (27-of-68) from the floor, 51.5 percent (17-of-33) in the second period. The Broncos also hit 30 percent (6-of-20) from beyond the arc and 57.1 percent (12-of-21) from the free-throw line during the contest.

Fresno State countered by hitting 45.5 percent (25-of-55) from the floor, 42.1 percent (8-of-19) from the arc and 76.9 percent (20-of-26) from the charity stripe. After trailing by 18 rebounds in the first half, the Broncos cut the Bulldogs' advantage on the glass down to six by games end and out scored the visitors 21-to-8 in second chance points.

Taylor Thompson led four Bulldogs in double digit points with 24, followed by Bree Farley with 13, Moriah Faulk had a double-double on 12 points and 10 rebounds, while Alex Furr scored 10 points. Jacinta Vandenberg had a team-high 11 rebounds for Fresno State.

The first half was all Fresno State as the Broncos struggled to get their shots to fall. The Bulldogs led by as many as 20 points at 34-14 with three minutes to play before settling for a 41-23 advantage at the break.

Boise State shot 28 percent from the floor and went 0-for-7 from the 3-point arc. Fresno State hit 52 percent from the floor in the first half, 3-of-8 from the arc and 8-of-10 from the free-throw line.

Down 18 at the break, Boise State rallied slowly chipping away at their deficit. A Weaver 3-pointer with 13 minutes left cut the Bulldog lead to single digits at nine points, 47-38. It would remain a single-digit contest the rest of the way. Rodriguez then lit Fresno State up hitting three consecutive 3-pointers to pulled the Broncos to within one point, 48-47, with 11:10 to go.

Fresno State regrouped and fought off the Broncos regaining an eight-point advantage on two occasions, the last came with 5:18 on the clock and the Bulldogs up 66-58 following a Faulk 3-pointer.

The Broncos rallied again. Down six points at 68-62 with 3:50 to go, Boise State came back scoring the final six points of regulation to earn their first tie of the game. Askew hit four free throws to pull Boise State to within 68-66 to setup Rodriguez Ortego's final short jumper with 17 seconds on the clock which forced overtime.

Boise State could never manage to gain the lead in the game but forced two ties in the extra period before fading down the stretch. The Broncos scored 21 points in overtime earlier this year in a 86-80 win at New Mexico on Feb. 12, but managed only four tonight against the Bulldogs.