Utah State women’s basketball loses to Colorado at Nugget Classic, 78-68

RENO, Nev. – Utah State women’s basketball (2-4) lost to Colorado (5-0) 78-68 in its final game of the Nugget Classic at the Lawlor Events Center in Reno, Nev., on Sunday.
Junior guard/forward Shannon Dufficy led the Aggies with a career-high 23 points, while junior guard/forward Hailey Bassett-Meacham and freshman guard Steph Gorman also scored in double figures with 12 and 10 points, respectively. Junior guard Eliza West had a team-high six assists, while senior guard Rachel Brewster led the team with six rebounds
Utah State opened the game with an early 7-2 lead after a Dufficy jumper and a layup and three from Gorman. The Buffaloes responded with an 8-1 run and led 26-22 after one period.

After a pair of free throws from sophomore guard Emmie Harris cut the lead to two at 26-24 early in the second, the Buffaloes went on an 11-0 run for the 37-24 lead. Eliza West knocked down a trey for the Aggies first field goal of the period to make it a 10-point game, but Colorado maintained the advantage and took a 43-31 lead into halftime.

Colorado built up its lead to 50-35 with just under eight minutes to go in the third quarter. Utah State fought back, however, and trimmed the deficit to eight at 61-53.
The Aggies continued to chip away at Colorado’s lead in the fourth quarter, making it a three-point game at 66-63 after a Gorman trey with 4:42 to play. However, Utah State was unable to get any closer as the Buffaloes extended their lead back out to 10 with 1:12 remaining. After a Bassett-Meacham bucket brought the Aggies within eight at 76-68 with a minute to play, Colorado made the final basket of the night to post the 78-68 victory.
Colorado was led by senior guard Kennedy Leonard with 17 points and eight assists.
Utah State shot 44.1 percent (26-of-59) from the field, 25.0 percent (5-of-20) from behind the arc and 78.6 percent (11-of-14) at the free throw line. Colorado shot 51.9 percent (27-of-52) from the floor, 50.0 percent (12-of-24) from the 3-point line and 70.6 percent (12-of-17) at the free throw line.
Utah State next travels to Porland, Ore., to take on Portland (4-1) on Wednesday, Nov. 28, at 8 p.m. (MT).

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