USU lets 17 point lead slip away, losing to Fresno St 86-76

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Rosie Moult tied her career high with 23 points and tied a Western Athletic Conference women’s tournament record for three-pointers made to help Fresno State come back from 17 points down to beat Utah State 86-76 in the semifinals of the WAC tournament on Friday. The No. 2 seed Bulldogs (24-7) will face No. 1 seed Louisiana Tech (24-6) in the WAC championship on Saturday. The Aggies (17-14) pulled ahead by 17 points midway through the first half, but Fresno State erased most of their lead by halftime to trail just 37-35. The Bulldogs went ahead for good early in the second half on a 3-pointer by Hayley Munro that sparked a 12-0 run. “USU was big down low so we had to go outside and shoot,” said Fresno St. head coach Adrian Wiggins. “We got good rebounds off those three point shots.” Munro finished with 15 points while Jaleesa Ross and Marnique Arnold added 12 each for Fresno State. Fresno State set a new conference tournament record for three pointers with 14 made. “It’s not an easy defense to deal with,” Wiggins said of getting down by 17 in the first half against USU. “We can shoot the ball real well so we can come back. I thought today, about halfway through the second half, I told them they had to figure it out and they did.” Devyn Christensen scored 19 points, Ashlee Brown 17, Jenna Johnson 16 and Banna Diop 11. “It’s cliché but it was a tail of two halves,” said USU coach Raegan Pebley. “We let them go on a big momentm run going into the half. With a team with that much experience it was hard to stop. “They hit some threes but I think what hurt us more was the turnovers in the second half. They came up with a lot of loose balls and offensive rebounding and was able to score off that.” “We’re very close to being one or two in the league,” Christensen said. “We’ll have to use our leadership next year. We can’t have different mentalities in different halves. We’ll need the same intensity.”

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