March 10, 2007

Winning in Vegas - Lobo Style

New Mexico just picked up their ticket to the dance and won't have to worry about over sleeping and missing the NCAA tournament selection show tomorrow.

Helping them to enjoy sleeping in tomorrow morning are the performances of Marsh (team leading 20 points), Briody (14 points), Katie Montgomery (13 points) and Brandi Kimble (10 points and a team leading nine rebounds).

While these were the leaders, it was their total team effort of shooting 44% from the field, tough defense that made it tough for BYU to connect on their shots and getting it done from the free throw line with 82% shooting.

BYU was not on their game today. The Cougars were led by Gillespie (17 points), Shawnee Slade (14 points) and Riley (10 points and 14 rebounds).

With this win, the Lobos claim their fourth MWC Tournament Championship.

That's it for women's hoops in Vegas!

MWC All Tournament Team

The 2007 Mountain West Conference All-Tournament Team

Dionne Marsh - New Mexico
Julie Briody - New Mexico
Mallary Gillespie - BYU
Lauren Riley - BYU
Hannah Zavecz - Wyoming

Tournament MVP - Marsh

Stay tuned for the wrap up!

New Mexico vs. BYU: Lady Luck Smiles on the Lobos

New Mexico's Dionne Marsh connected on both of her free throws with 55 seconds left, the Lobo and Cougar scrubs are on the floor and I finally got to see my upset in conference tournament time as New Mexico beat BYU 63-49.

The awards are about to be handed out, so stay tuned!

New Mexico vs. BYU: Hungry for an upset

Before this game I walked around the concourse level here at the Thomas & Mack Center to discover what culinary delights fans have indulged on this week.

While the healthiest item up there is either from Subway or the Tacos, Tacos place, there were also plenty of less healthy alternatives to choose from.

So while I am now getting hungry for either some chicken strips and garlic fries or chili cheese fries, the No. 3 seed New Mexico Lobs are in striking distance of upsetting the No. 1 seed BYU Cougars.

The Cougars are still in it, but seem a little bit deflated after losing one of their big players in the middle and having one of their own get a technical foul.

Stay tuned, we're close to the minute mark.

New Mexico 61
BYU 47

Time: 1:19

New Mexico vs. BYU: The tip of the day

My tip of the day goes to New Mexico's Marsh.

She is playing with a ton of emotion right now after getting called for a stupid foul under the BYU net and it shows.

She just tipped a pass that was going into BYU's Wright and then on a drive to her team's basket, drew the foul on BYU's Wright that mad her say good night for the day.

Not only was BYU's coach Judkins angry about the call, but Jennie Keele also lost her cool and got a technical called against her.

Interesting thing is that Judkins did not pull Keele out of the game to cool off.

Stay tuned, it's getting interesting...

New Mexico 51
BYU 47

Time: 3:14

New Mexico vs. BYU: Ridiculous

Competitive games are fun, but with the way fouls are being called (or shall I say NOT being called), someone is going to get hurt.

Two minutes ago New Mexico's Timi E-Nunu got kicked in the head after being body checked to the ground by BYU's Riley. E-Nunu is currently on the sidelines with a bag of ice on her nose. Do you think Riley was called for a foul??? You only get one guess and there are only two letters in the word...

Next seeing how New Mexico got called for a very questionable fouldown on the BYU side of the floor, I am starting to believe in a possible BYU favoritism.

I could be wrong, but there is something that is just a little off...

Stay tuned...

New Mexico 41
BYU 40

Time: 6:56

New Mexico vs. BYU: Out of their comfort zone

New Mexico may be self-destructing.

The Lobos have blown their lead like a stack of casino chips and the Cougars are enjoying a 16-7 run since the start of the half.

Not sure what New Mexico's coach Don Flanagan told his troops at the half, but if the Lobos are not careful, they could be sitting on the sidelines watching BYU enjoy the win.

Stay tuned...

New Mexico 36
BYU 33

New Mexico vs. BYU: BYU is finding their shots

While as much as New Mexico would like to win this game, there seems to be a little bit of a let up here in the second half.

The let up is not only in the form of how New Mexico's defense is not the same as in the first half, but with BYU shots starting to fall, the Cougars are trying to stay in the game.

Stay tuned...

New Mexico 32
BYU 27


New Mexico vs. BYU: Ultimate swag

So my editor Jeff flirted his way to a t-shirt last weekend and fellow blogger Jessica is getting shafted on the media meals, but the MWC just upped the ante in my book.

Fans were give ralley towels as they entered the Thomas & Mack Center today and the media are being well-taken care of. Since I am a fan of the game, I felt I too (and Jeff and Jessica) should all get ralley towels.

Keep your eye on your mail guys, there's a rally towel being thrown your way!

Continue reading "New Mexico vs. BYU: Ultimate swag" »

New Mexico vs. BYU: A little frustrated?

BYU's Gillespie had the hot hand last night, but right now she seems to have a bit of a hot head.

After all, she is the only one of their players who is visibly yelling at the refs right before coach Judkins got his turn.

The intensity of Gillespies' yelling was so obvious that I wonder if she is working her way to a technical foul. Then again, after chatting with one of the coaches scouting out the BYU men's game last night, there's a thought that the BYU teams don't get as many fouls called on them and are suspect to getting some unfair treatment.

Stay tuned...

New Mexico 21
BYU 14

Time: 2:40

New Mexico vs. BYU: Battle of the mascots

To my left Cosmo Cougar from BYU is running around while to my right, there is a female Lobo, or some type of wolf, dressed up in a cheerleader's uniform and with a bow in her left ear cheering on fans.

I have to say that the Lobo mascot might be perceived as being a little sketchy looking as her teeth are exposed and her tongue is hanging out the right side of her mouth.

Cosmo on the other hand is very much in touch with his masculine side as he some muscle tone in that fur.

I'm kind of disappointed as they never have the two mascots meet.

Stay tuned...New Mexico is opening up their lead and BYU is looking a bit frustrated as the calls are not going their way and they are not connecting on their shots giving them a current 21% shooting percentage.

New Mexico 16
BYU 11

New Mexico vs. BYU: Lobos start by hitting the duece

New Mexico is making it very clear that they do not want BYU walking over them this game.

First the Lobos score the first bucket of the night and then their defense is reading the BYU offense very well in these opening minutes. Complimenting hitting the duece was a steal by Dionne Marsh who was guarding BYU's Lauren Riley down in the paint past part of their zone rotation. Next, Marsh picked off a pass, and earned her second steal for the game, from BYU guard Mallary Gillespie.

The Lobos lead was short-lived as BYU's Danni Wright scored their first points of the night, but if the Lobos can keep this up, their post-season future will be guaranteed.

Stay tuned...

New Mexico 4

Time: 13:50

New Mexico vs. BYU: Who's feeling lucky???

With being in Vegas and having my hotel room number last night be 222 (seriously), I thought it only appropriate to use some of the Vegas lingo in as many of my blogs today.

We're getting ready to tip off for the Women's Championshp game between BYU and New Mexico.

BYU is the regular-season champion, but New Mexico wants to assure their place come tomorrow during Selection Sunday, so this game could be better than the BYU game yesterday.

You can tell this game is going to be played Vegas-style as they just turned off the lights and treating fans to a highlight reel from both semi-final games yesterday.

As always, stay tuned...

March 09, 2007

Utah vs. BYU: Another one makes it to tomorrow

After claiming the regular-season title, BYU just gave themselves the opportunity to also earn the MWC tournament title with their 55-49 win.

Sure the Cougars had to fend off that enormous Utah run and avoid a total meltdown themselves, but every foul and Wright's cut on the chin from a foul, all seem to be worth it right now.

Wright led all BYU scores with 14 points, but with teammates Gillespie (13 points and nine rebounds) and Johnsen (12 points) right behind her, the Cougars were too much for Utah tonight.

Utah also had three players in double digits (Whipple, Filipe and Warner), but considering they shot a mere 31% as a team compared to BYU's 42% shooting, it just wasn't in the cards for the Utes today.

BYU heads into the finals facing New Mexico tomorrow at 2 pm.

Utah vs. BYU: No upset in store

Right before the two minute mark, BYU's Keele hit a three point shot to end all three point buckets.

No, it was not doen under pressure or was there some funky form used to lauch it, but after it went in, the BYU bench knew how important it was.

The entire bench, led by coach Judkins, errupted in cheers.

Utah tried to shake off the basket, but with that being the shot that is helping solidify the win, Utah is breaking down.

Stay tuned...

BYU 53
Utah 47

Utah vs. BYU: A BYU comeback

For a game that's been good, but with very lilttle action, BYU seems to be saving their best for last.

In the last minute of play, BYU has held Utah scoreless and are enjoying taking over the lead.

Stay tuned...

BYU 43
Utah 41

Utah vs. BYU: An upset in the works?

With a 17-4 run, Utah may defy the oddsmakers here in Vegas and pull off the first upset I get to cover out of the two conference tournaments in the West.

Stay tuned, there's still 7:12 on the clock.

BYU 36
Utah 41

Utah vs. BYU: Being big inside

BYU's Riley and Utah's Joh-Teena Filipe have been battling it out all game.

Granted that Riley has two inches on Filipe, but after both of them brought the other one down to the ground under the BYU net, it's this kind of fire and desire to win that has made this game go from a blow out to Utah now leading by five.

It has also helped Utah's cause to force a couple of turnovers on steals and frustrate BYU's offense a bit.

It's far from being over, so stay tuned....

BYU 34
Utah 39

Time: 10:47

Utah vs. BYU: The comeback?

Utah is getting hot and the Cougars know it.

After trailing by eight at halftime, the Utes have spent the first five minutes of the second half chipping away at the lead.

The result, we are all tied up at 34.

I don't believe that BYU is losing their edge, but with the Utes shooting 50% from the field compared to BYU shooting 33%, the post-season picture may look really interesting for the teams from the MWC.

Stay tuned...there's 14:50 on the game clock.

Utah vs. BYU: Serenity now

After sitting in the Western version of New Mexico's The Pit, the BYU and Utah fans are much quieter.

Sure, they cheer and jeer when fouls are called, but I don't have a screamer behind me and there is just a more mellow mood now in the Thomas & Mack Center. Maybe it's the lack of caffeine in this crowd's system that is making it quiet.

The Cougars have made quick work of the Utes and continue to expand their lead, now at 28-19

Stay tuned...

Utah vs. BYU: Hot handed Gillespie

BYU's Mallary Gillespie has the hot hand for the moment.

She has not only hit both of her last shots (a three-pointer and a lay up), but she is also leading the Cougars with seven points in the first half.

Her seven points are helping BYU open a six point lead here in the first half.

While she has the hot shooting hand it is BYU's Jennie Keele and Lauren Riley who have the hot handle on the boards with their three grabs a piece.

Stay tuned...

BYU 17
Utah 11
Time: 7:22

Utah vs. BYU: Keeping it close...

We're five minutes into the game and with both teams wanting to come back to play tomorrow, it's close here in the first five minutes of the game.

BYU currently has the edge, but Utah fighting for every point, including Kalee Whipple's recent lay-up and free throw, we're all tied up at 6.

Stay tuned....

Time: 15:22

Utah vs. BYU: State bragging rights on the line

It's time for semi-final No. 2 and we have a cross-state connection with Utah facing off against BYU.

Stay tuned, tip off is in less than three minutes...

New Mexico vs. Wyoming: Wrap up

Sometimes it's just a matter of finding the momentum.

For New Mexico, they found their momentum repeatedly and are enjoying being the first team to make it to tomorrow's finals.

First New Mexico opened the game with a19-9 run. Then Wyoming responded with a 15-6 run to keep the game close at 25-21.

Yet it was New Mexico who after trading baskets in the beginning of the second half, enjoyed finiding and holding onto the momentum to give them the win.

Leading the way for New Mexico was Julie Briody with 21 points and eight rebounds.

Meanwhile Wyoming's Hanna Zavecz led the Cowgirls with 22 points and tied three other players with four rebounds.

Stay tuned, we have an all state of Utah semi-final coming up next!

New Mexico vs. Wyoming: Getting roasted in The Pit of the West 65-53

New Mexico's home court is affectionately called 'The Pit.'

In The Pit, their fans are loud and it can be quite intidimating if you are on the opposing team.

Well, if New Mexico couldn't play their tournament in The Pit then their fans would have to turn the Thomas & Mack Center into a Pit of their own, which has been accomplished.

While the commentary from the crowds is entertaining, it is the action on the court where the Lobos are now roasting the Cowgirls that is giving New Mexico fans lots of fodder.

New Mexico just edged out Wyoming in shooting (45% vs. 43%), but the Lobos controlled the boards (33 vs. 26) and teaching the Cowgirls that making shots at the free throw line makes a difference.

The Lobos shot 73% from the charity stripe while the Cowgirls shot 67%.

The game is over now and New Mexico are the first to make it into tomorrow's final.

Stay tuned...more wrap up on the way...

New Mexico 65
Wyoming 53

New Mexico vs. Wyoming: Advil anyone?

The Thomas & Mack Center may have red plastic seats, but it is the sea of red from the New Mexico fans that is drowning everything out.

Well, that and the cheers and jeers of their fans.

Yes, every single call, whether is is for or against New Mexico, is responded to by these fans who account for at least 70% of the total attendance in this first semi-final.

Anyone have some earplugs I can borrow?

Stay tuned...

New Mexico 51
Wyoming 43

New Mexico vs. Wyoming: Deja vu?

Even Wyoming coach Joe Legerski didn't like what he was seeing and needed a time out.

After New Mexico opened up the first half with an 8-0 run, the Lobos are off and running again.

The Cowgirls are having a tough time in the opening half of the second half and it is showing. Yes, they traded baskets with the Lobos to open it up, but as New Mexico is opening up their lead, one can't help but wonder if the second half is going to be much like the first where the Cowgirls are going to make their move again in the last 10 minutes of the half.

Coach Legerski's first time out didn't seem to help much, so maybe this second one will be the trick.

Stay tuned...

New Mexico 45
Wyoming 35

Time: 11:49

New Mexico vs. Wyoming: Early trouble for the Cowgirls

We just started the second half and as both teams came out guns blazing and trading baskets, there's one Cowgirl who may have her game cut short.

Wyoming's Zavecz just got called for her fourth foul and is now taking a rest.

This could mean big trouble for the Cowgirls as Zavecz led her teamates in the first half with 13 points.

Stay tuned...

New Mexico 37
Wyoming 32

New Mexico vs. Wyoming: Sharp shooter

Despite playing tough defense, it just got shot down from NBA three point land.

With the shot clock running out and non of her teammates being able to get close to the basket, Wyoming's Hanna Zavecz just nailed a three pointer and Megan McGuffey made a smoth move and a hook shot that is keeping the Cowgirls in this.

It's now halftime and after a slow start, Wyoming is not out of this quite yet.

Stay tuned...

New Mexico 29
Wyoming 28

New Mexico vs. Wyoming: Hold onto your hats!

The New Mexico women's basketball team is pretty relentless (just like the loud obnoxious fan sitting behind me).

With a current 47% shooting percentage compared to Wyoming's dismal 31% shooting percentage, this game has gotten ugly very quickly.

Adding to the dismal shooting percentage for Wyoming is a New Mexico defensive effort that has alread created one shot clock violation for the cowgirls is the slight 13-11 edge on the boards for the Lobos.

However, in the short amount of time I have been writing this, Wyoming is turning it around and their fans are loving it.

Stay tuned, we have less than five minutes in the half...

New Mexico 21
Wyoming 16

Time: 3:33

Continue reading "New Mexico vs. Wyoming: Hold onto your hats!" »

New Mexico vs. Wyoming: Fan appeal

I think I've seen it all now.

First there is the New Mexico fan straight across from me with his face painted all red and wearing Viking horns.

Then there is the Wyoming fan who is not wearing a shirt or pants, but the only visible pieces of clothing are the glittering gold wheel barrel being held up by suspenders, a cowboy hat, white tube socks that are up to his needs and a pair of cowboy boots. I bet you are wondering how he is going to sit down...I'll have to get the story during half time.

Each school is also well represented by their larger than life mascot, but I think the fans may be the second biggest source of entertainment next to the game itself.

Stay tuned...New Mexico is continuing their dominance...

New Mexico 12
Wyoming 2

Time: 13:33

Continue reading "New Mexico vs. Wyoming: Fan appeal" »

New Mexico vs. Wyoming: Lobos strike first

After getting the tip off and almost losing the ball due to not getting the offensive board, New Mexco's Marsh picked up a nice two-foot shot while Brandi Kimble followed that up with a three-pointer on their next posession.

New Mexico is taking control of this game early on and Wyoming is having problems connecting on their shots and with a Wymoning offensive foul on their most recent possession, the Lobos are currently enjoying an 8-0 lead.

Stay tuned...

New Mexico 8
Wyoming 0

Time: 16:09

New Mexico vs. Wyoming: Getting ready to roll in Vegas

There's still about 30 minutes before tip off, but with one of the broadcasters from The Mountain West Sports Network donning an over-sized Wymoing Cowboy (er, Cowgirl) hat for his pre-game stand-up, both teams are on the floor and getting ready to roll for this first of two semi-final games today.

Ulike the Pac-10 fans, Mountain West Conference fans seem to have no shame as I've seen a couple of New Mexico fans with their faces painted (only men would do something silly like this) and a few signs have popped up in the stands.

Stay tuned, tip off is coming up!

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