The Wyoming Cowgirls got a near triple-double from Tommi Olson and a career-high 16 points from Dagny Davidsdottir as they were able to surge past Air Force late Saturday afternoon in Laramie for a 55-49 victory.
Wyoming (5-5, 3-4 MW) got off to a good start in the contest and led much of the first quarter. A Quinn Weidemann 3-pointer with 53 seconds left in the opening ten minutes capped a 7-0 run for the Cowgirls to end the quarter and UW led 16-9 after one.
In the second quarter, Air Force (3-7, 1-4 MW) would respond, outscoring the Cowgirls 15-6 in the frame while shooting 6-of-10 from the floor while Wyoming shot just 3-for-11 (27.3 percent) and trailed the Falcons at the break, 24-22.
In the third, AFA built its biggest lead of the game, 30-24 with 7:02 left to play after a Nikki McDonald 3-pointer, but this time it was UW’s turn to rally as they chipped away at the deficit to take a 34-32 lead with 1:29 to go in the quarter on an Alba Sanchez Ramos jumper in the lane. After a Falcon 3-pointer, Ola Ustowska was able to beat the buzzer with a tip-in and the Cowgirls led 36-35 after three.
In the fourth, Air Force seemed to take control once again when Emily Conroe’s 3-pointer with 7:32 left to play pushed the Falcons ahead 43-38. But from there on the Cowgirls would go an 11-0 scoring run and would end the final seven plus minutes outscoring the Falcons, 17-6. An Olson layup with 4:42 to go gave the Cowgirls a 45-43 lead, a lead in which they wouldn’t relinquish. After the Olson layup, Davidsdottir hit a pair of big free-throws and then got a layup with 2:47 left to play to give UW a 49-43 advantage.
Leading 49-45 with just 55 seconds left to play, UW would nail six free throws in the final minute to keep the Falcons at bay. Jaye Johnson went 2-for-2 at the line to put Wyoming up 51-45 while Weidemann was 4-of-4 at the stripe the final half minute and is now 10-of-11 at the stripe this season in the final minute of games.
“Tommi does a lot for us,” said Gerald Mattinson postgame.
“She brings a lot of energy to the team on both ends of the floor. I thought tonight, especially in the second half, she responded by taking the ball to the basket. We told her she was going to have to go strong to the hoop and finish a couple of times and she did that tonight. Tommi does a lot, she does a lot defensively, and she just keeps bringing energy and energy and energy.”
Olson finished the night with her first career double-double, scoring 10 points on 4-of-8 shooting while also grabbing a game-high 11 rebounds. Olson also dished out eight assists and got the job done on the defensive end with two blocks and a steal. Davidsdottir’s 16 points are a best for her in a Cowgirl uniform and also tied a career-high for her. Davidsdottir scored 16 points last season while playing at Niagara. Davidsdottir went 7-of-8 from the floor on the night and also had two rejections.
“I thought all of our veterans played well, especially against the pressure that Air Force brings. We made some changes in the second half of what I wanted us to do and I thought our kids responded to that really well. I thought Dagny played excellent, she did it very efficiently. I’ve got to give Jaye credit, it wasn’t just her but Jaye had the defensive assignment most of the game on Riley Snyder (Air Force’s leading scorer) and Jaye and her teammates worked their tails off to hold her to six,” continued Mattinson.
Weidemann was the other Cowgirl in double figures in the win as she scored 12 points and hit a pair of 3-pointers. Sanchez Ramos and Johnson chipped in with six and five, respectively. For the game, UW shot 42 percent from the floor, 21-of-50 and was just 3-for-13 (23.1 percent) from beyond-the-arc. However, the Cowgirls went 10-of-11 at the line, shooting a season-best 91 percent at the stripe.
Air Force went 20-of-57 (35.1 percent) shooting overall from the field and was 4-of-15 from 3-point range. The Falcons went 5-of-7 at the line and had a 14-10 advantage in points off turnovers while also outscoring the Cowgirls 11-6 in second-chance points. UW had a 36-20 advantage in points in the paint in the victory.
The Cowgirls will now go for the series sweep over Air Force as game two is set for 6:30 Monday night in the Arena-Auditorium.