USU Women Host New Mexico State And La Tech In Final Home Weekend
Guard Camille Brox will be one of three USU seniors playing in their final two home games when the navy Aggies host New Mexico State on Thursday and Louisiana Tech on Saturday.  The three seniors, who are the first group of players to be at USU for four years since 1986-87, will be honored on Saturday night.
 
Guard Camille Brox will be one of three USU seniors playing in their final two home games when the navy Aggies host New Mexico State on Thursday and Louisiana Tech on Saturday. The three seniors, who are the first group of players to be at USU for four years since 1986-87, will be honored on Saturday night.
 
 

Feb. 21, 2007

LOGAN, Utah -

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GAME #25 - New Mexico State (10-14, 5-7 WAC) at Utah State (10-13, 6-5 WAC)
Thursday, Feb. 22, 7 p.m. (MT)
Logan, Utah • Dee Glen Smith Spectrum (10,270)
Broadcast: 1390 AM • www.UtahStateAggies.com

GAME #26 - Louisiana Tech (15-11, 10-3 WAC) at Utah State (10-13, 6-5 WAC)
Saturday, Feb. 24, 7 p.m. (MT)
Logan, Utah • Dee Glen Smith Spectrum (10,270)
Broadcast: 1390 AM • www.UtahStateAggies.com

QUICKLY - Utah State (10-14, 6-6 WAC) returns to the friendly confines of the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum (10,270), for the navy-clad Aggies' final two home games of the season when USU hosts New Mexico State (10-14, 5-7 WAC) on Thursday, Feb. 22, in an "Aggie clash," and Louisiana Tech (15-11, 10-3 WAC) on Saturday, Feb. 24. Both games tip-off at 7 p.m. Saturday will be "Senior Night" as USU will be honoring its three seniors: guard Camille Brox, and forwards Brittany Hagen and Brittany Phillips.

This senior class will be the first group of players that head coach Raegan Pebley has recruited and developed from freshmen to seniors, and this class will be the first senior class to be here four years since 1986-87, as USU reinstated women's basketball for the 2003-04 season.

USU enters the weekend sixth in the WAC standings after the Aggies' three-game win streak (its longest since 2004-05) was snapped Sunday at Hawai'i, 79-63. The game that was originally scheduled for Saturday, but USU had some travel issues and missed their connection to Hawai'i because of fog in the San Francisco area and President's Day weekend holiday travelers.

New Mexico State is one game behind USU in the standings at seventh, while La Tech is second, a half-game back of league-leading Boise State. The Lady Techsters play at third-place Fresno State on Thursday before visiting Logan.

The Aggies, who have won four of their last five home games, will welcome head coach Raegan Pebley back to the bench after she did not make the Hawai'i trip due to having a baby on Jan. 30.

With its 10-13 overall record and 6-5 WAC mark, USU has surpassed last season's overall win total (3-24) and last year's WAC victory total (2-14).

Senior forward Brittany Phillips has surpassed the 800-point milestone, and currently holds the No. 10 spot on USU's career scoring list, with 828 career points. Phillips needs nine points to pass Pat Montgomery's (1977-80) 836 points at the No. 9 spot.

Junior guard Taylor Richards currently holds the No. 11 spot, with 785 career points.

Richards, who is the career assists record holder with 275 assists, also has sole possession of the No. 10 spot on USU's career steals list with her 104 career steals needing 20 more steals to crack the top three on the steals list.

New Mexico State has lost four of its last five and six of its last eight, including a 68-51 loss to Utah State at Las Cruces, N.M. on Feb. 5. The maroon-clad Aggies haven't played since last Thursday, when they ended their four-game homestand with a 69-53 loss to La Tech.

Louisiana Tech is the hottest team in the WAC this side of Hawai'i (winners of six-straight), as the Lady Techsters have won two in a row and seven of their last eight. After beating New Mexico State, 69-53, on Thursday, La Tech topped Idaho, 78-71, on Saturday. La Tech plays at third-place Fresno State Thursday before coming to Logan.

SCHEDULE TIME CHANGE - USU's game at Fresno State on March 3 has been changed to a 2 p.m. (MT) tip-off.

SEASON XIX - The 2006-07 season marks the 19th year of women's basketball at USU, and just the fourth since the program was restarted prior to the 2003-04 season. The women's hoops program at USU had been disbanded following the 1987 season due to budget cuts. USU is playing in its second season in the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) after playing its first two seasons in the Big West Conference.

ADMISSION - Ticket prices for USU regular-season games are $5 for adults, $1 for youth. Contact the USU Athletics Ticket Office at (435)797-0305 or at 1-888-U-STATE-1 (1-888-878-2831) for more information.

AGGIES ON THE RADIO/WEB - Utah State games can be heard on KLGN (1390 AM) in Logan with Evan Nyman calling the play-by-play and Clair Anderson providing color commentary for home games. They can also be heard on the web by going to the women's basketball home page at www.UtahStateAggies.com and clicking on the LISTEN link.

Note-1: Fans can now listen to archived broadcasts of Aggie women's basketball games, also by going to the women's basketball home page at www.UtahStateAggies.com and clicking on the LISTEN link.

GAMETRACKER - Fans can follow Aggie home games through the USU website at www.UtahStateAggies.com via GameTracker, a free service, which updates play-by-play and statistics throughout the game.

WAC TV - WAC.tv is the Internet-based distribution system of WAC content. WAC.tv streams video with accompanying audio from the home team at a bit rate of 539 kilo bits per second. This bit rate is the equivalent to cable television resolution.

Whether on the road, at home, or in the office, WAC.tv will bring games to fans that they have never had access to before. All year long, WAC.tv will be home to some of the best match-ups, best stories, and best teams.

For more information and season ticket packages, go to www.WAC.tv.

CSTV - The WAC had seven regular-season women's basketball games on College Sports Television (CSTV) this season, including Utah State's game at New Mexico State on Feb. 5. The WAC Championship game on March 10 will also be televised on CSTV. Check with cable operator for local listings.

ABOUT UTAH STATE - The Aggies are 11-13 overall and 6-6 in WAC action, after having their three-game winning streak snapped with a 79-63 loss at Hawai'i on Sunday. The three-game win streak is USU's longest since the 2004-05 season, and matches the longest winning streak under head coach Raegan Pebley.

Utah State surpassed last season's win total (3-24) with the Aggies' fourth win of the year, knocking off Colgate, 58-42, on Dec. 30. With a 78-70 win over Idaho on Jan. 11, USU won consecutive games for the first time this season. The win was also gave USU its first back-to-back victories since February of 2005, and also doubled the Aggies' win total from last season when USU was 3-24.

USU's 58-50 win over San Jose State on Jan. 20, gave the Aggies a 3-2 WAC mark, surpassing last year's WAC record (2-14).

In the WAC statistics, Utah State leads the league in free throw percentage both overall (.720), and in WAC only games (.744).

Overall, the Aggies are eighth in scoring offense (59.6 ppg) and sixth in scoring defense (65.3 ppg), to rank seventh in the league in scoring margin (-5.7). USU also ranks sixth in field goal percentage (.374) and seventh in three-point field goal percentage (.291). Defensively, the Aggies are seventh in field goal percentage defense (.413) and fifth in three-point FG pct. defense (.295). Additionally, USU is seventh in rebounding margin (-5.6), seventh in blocked shots (2.5 bpg), eighth in assists (10.8 apg), fourth in steals (8.7 spg) and fourth in turnover margin (+1.08).

In WAC only games, USU is also third in turnover margin (+2.25) and third in three-point pct. (.314). {See page 4 for complete WAC and WAC only rankings}

USU, which was second in the nation NCAA stats on Dec. 2, has climbed back in the Top 100, currently ranked 79th in the country. The Aggies have five players that have shot at least 15 free throws shooting 69.2 percent or better from the charity stripe.

Junior guard Taylor Richards (5-4, West Valley City, Utah), tallies 11.5 ppg, dishing out 2.8 apg and swiping 1.5 spg. {See Page 4 for Richards' WAC rankings}

Richards was named the WAC Player of the Week on Jan. 8 after tallying a career-high 28 points in USU's win over Fresno State on Jan. 6. {See below}

After scoring in double-figures nine times in 2005-06, with a season and at the time career-high of 22 points, Richards has posted double figures in 18 of the Aggies' 24 games, including 12 of the last 14.

Richards has surpassed 200 points in a season for the third year in a row, as she now has 277 points this season, closing in on her single-season career-high of 289 points her freshman season.

In addition to being USU's Career Assists leader, Richards has moved into the No. 3 spot on USU's Career Three-Pointers Made List, currently with 65 career three-pointers, and is No. 9 in Career Steals with 104 career steals.

Richards netted a team-high 19 points in Sunday's loss at Hawai'i, including 12 in the second half. Richards, the shortest player on the Aggies' roster at 5-4, led the team with seven rebounds.

Brittany Phillips, (SR, F, 6-0, Orem, Utah), has taken over the team scoring lead, and also leads USU in rebounding, tallying 11.6 ppg and pulling down 5.7 rpg. {See Page 4 for Phillips' WAC rankings}. Phillips notched career highs with 25 points and 12 rebounds in the win over New Mexico State on Feb. 5, hitting a season-high three treys.

Phillips was named WAC Player of the Week for her career-high performance in the NMSU game, and adding a team-high 12 points in Saturday's win at Idaho. {See below}

Phillips has surpassed the 800-point milestone, and currently holds the No. 10 spot on USU's career scoring list, with 828 career points. Phillips needs nine points to pass Pat Montgomery's (1977-80) 836 points at the No. 9 spot.

With 18 points Sunday, Phillips has now scored in double-figures in six-straight games and 10 of the last 12, with a total of 16 times in USU's 24 games.

Sophomore guard Danyelle Snelgro (5-5, Altadena, Calif.) posts 7.9 ppg, along with dishing out 3.2 apg and swiping 1.9 spg, and also leads the WAC in assist-TO ratio in WAC only games (1.85) and is second overall (1.21). {See page 4 for complete WAC rankings}

On Sunday at Hawai'i, Snelgro only played seven minutes, suffering an injury in the first half and did not return.

Snelgro has surpassed her season-total from last year in assists with 76 helpers, topping last season's 45 assists. Snelgro now has 121 career assists, which ranks just out of the USU Career Assists List.

ROAD WOE-IORS - Sunday's loss at Hawai'i snapped Utah State's two-game win streak on the road, marking the first time since 2004 that USU has won back-to-back road games. This season the Aggies are just 3-11 overall in away games, as the win at New Mexico State on Feb. 5 snapped an eight-game road losing skid, and was USU's first WAC road victory of the season, and after Sunday, USU is now 2-5 in road WAC action. Two of USU's all-time three WAC wins are at New Mexico State. Under head coach Raegan Pebley, USU is 12-51 (.194) overall on the road and 3-12 in WAC away games.

TREND BUCKING - Sunday's win continued some struggling trends for the Aggies: USU is 4-11 when being out-rebounded by the opponent, but are 5-2 when tallying more rebounds... Sunday was just the second time that USU had shot better than 40 percent from the field and lost, as the Aggies are now 7-2 when shooting better than 40 percent... USU is 3-9 when committing more turnovers than the opposition... 5-11 when the opponent scores 60+ points... USU is now 0-3 in day games, 0-2 on Sunday's and 3-2 in February.

PHILLIPS NAMED WAC PLAYER OF WEEK - Feb. 12 - Utah State senior Brittany Phillips was named the Western Athletic Conference women's basketball player of the week it was announced by the league office on Monday. USU's Jaycee Carroll won the men's award as well this week.

USU's sweep of the women's and men's award mark the second time this season that a school has swept the award, as Boise State's Jessica Thompson and Coby Carl received the respective honors on Jan. 29.

Phillips, a 6-0, senior, forward from Mountain View High School in Orem, Utah, tallied career highs of 25 points and 12 rebounds in Monday's 68-51 win at New Mexico State. She then added a team-high 12 points in Saturday's 57-53 win at Idaho, helping Utah State win back-to-back road games for the first time since Nov. 2004. Phillips hit a season-high three three-pointers in Monday's win as well.

Phillips, who earned honorable mention all-Big West honors as a sophomore in 2005, became the second Aggie to earn a WAC player of the week award this season as Taylor Richards claimed the honor on Jan. 8, marking the first weekly player award for USU women's basketball since February 2005. Overall, this is the fourth conference weekly player honor awarded to an Aggie player under head coach Raegan Pebley.

Phillips is averaging 11.0 points, second on the team by 0.6, while pulling down a team-leading 5.6 rebounds per game. She ranks second in the WAC in free throw percentage at 81.8 percent.

She has hit 67 three-pointers in her career, including 17 this season, to rank second all-time in school history. Phillips also ranks first in career three-point percentage and ranks second in USU career free throw percentage.

RICHARDS NAMED WAC PLAYER OF THE WEEK - Jan. 8 - Richards was named WAC Player of the Week after tallying a career-high 28 points, including 17 in the second half, in USU's win over Fresno State on Jan. 6. In the game she also dished out four assists to give her 248 for her career and became USU's career assists leader, passing Pam Shirley (1977-79) with 245 assists. She also had four steals in the contest. She also made a career-high 10 free throws, finishing the night 10-11.

In an 80-70 loss to Boise State on Jan. 4, Richards had 11 points to go with five assists and three steals.

In the Aggies' two games, Richards shot 50.0 percent (13-26) from the field, including 2-5 (40.0 percent) from three-point range, hitting 2-3 against Fresno State.

Richards' 28 points was the most scored by an Aggie under head coach Raegan Pebley since Christina Zdenek tallied 31 in a USU win on Jan. 10, 2004 over Cal Poly, when current USU assistant coach Kristy Flores was an assistant at Cal Poly. That win was USU's first win since reinstating the program for the 2003-04 season.

The honor is the first WAC Player of the Week award for a Utah State player since joining the WAC last season, and is the first conference player of the week honor since Ali (Aird) Marchant was named Big West Player of the Week on Feb. 21, 2005. Overall it is the third conference player of the week honor awarded to an Aggie player under head coach Raegan Pebley, as Christina Zdenek received a Big West honor on Oct. 29, 2004.

PHILLIPS AND RICHARDS ON CAREER SCORING LIST - Senior forward Brittany Phillips has surpassed the 800-point milestone, and currently holds the No. 10 spot on USU's career scoring list, with 828 career points. Phillips needs nine points to pass Pat Montgomery's (1977-80) 836 points at the No. 9 spot.

Junior guard Taylor Richards holds the No. 11 spot, with 785 career points.

RICHARDS IS USU CAREER ASSISTS RECORD HOLDER/TOP 10 STEALS LIST - Junior guard Taylor Richards now has 275 assists for her career, surpassing Pam Shirley for the top spot on USU's Career Assist List, as Shirley had 245 assists from 1977-79.

Richards now has 104 career steals, taking over sole possession for No. 9 on the USU Career Steals List, and needing 20 steals to crack the top three.

RECORD-HOLDER HAGEN / CENTURY CLUB IN GAMES PLAYED- Brittany Hagen became the USU record holder for career 3-pointers last year, and entered her senior season with 83 treys, ranking second in career 3-point FG percentage (83-234, .355).

To date, Hagen is 104-318, .327 from three-point range for her career, including 21-84 (.253) this season. Hagen hit her 100th career three-pointer on Jan. 6, part of her season-high three treys on the way to a season-high 14 points, and attempted her milestone 300th career trey on Jan. 20.

When she took the court on Jan. 24, Hagen played in her 100th career game, and on Sunday she took over sole possession on USU's Career Games Played List as Hagen played in her 106th career game, the only player to play in all 106 games since USU reinstated women's basketball for the 2003-04 season.

Also on Jan. 24, Hagen tallied her 500th career point, and currently has 514 career points.

NEW LAST NAME, SAME RECORD-HOLDER - Brittany (Tressler) Phillips got married this past summer, and she entered her senior season first in career 3-point FG percentage (50-132, .379), and is third in 3-pointers made, as well as second in career free throw percentage (128-170, .753).

To date, Phillips is 72-186 (.387) behind the three-point arc, including 22-54 (.407) this season, and has moved into second on the career 3-pointers made list.

She is 188-247 (.761) career free throw shooting, going 60-77 (.779) this year.

PEBLEY'S BITS
- Head coach Raegan Pebley did not travel to La Tech due to her pregnancy, nor did she travel to San Jose State, New Mexico State, and Idaho, after having a baby on Jan. 30. Pebley coached Thursday's home game, but was not be on the Aggies' bench Sunday at Hawai'i.

- Now in her fourth season, head coach Raegan Pebley has an overall record of 32-74 (.302) in 106 games overall and a 8-20 (.286) mark in WAC action... Pebley is in her fourth season, which is tied for the most among USU women's basketball coaches. Fern Gardner (1972-76) and Cindy Perkins (1978-82) also had four-year tenures leading the Aggies' program. Gardner has the most wins (55) while Perkins has coached in the most games (115) in USU coaching history.

- The 2006-07 senior class will be the first group of players that Pebley has recruited and developed from freshmen to seniors, and this class will be the first senior class to be here four years since 1986-87, as USU reinstated women's basketball for the 2003-04 season.

- Seven players earned academic all-conference honors in 2006, the most under Pebley's tenure.

LAST TIME OUT - HONOLULU, Hawaii - Utah State's women's basketball was out-rebounded, 42-26, in the Aggies' 79-63 loss to Hawai'i Sunday afternoon at UH's Stan Sheriff Center in a Western Athletic Conference game. The game had been postponed from Saturday night due to some travel issues for Utah State in getting to Hawaii.

The loss snaps USU's three-game win streak, its longest since the 2004-05 season, and the Aggies are now 10-14 overall and 6-6 in WAC play. Utah State was tied for third in the conference standings after Thursday's win over Nevada, but slipped to sixth with Sunday's loss. Hawai'i won its sixth in a row in improving to 13-12 overall and 7-6 in WAC play, moving up to fifth in the league standings.

The win gives Hawai'i the season sweep over USU, as the Rainbow Wahine beat the Aggies, 62-57, at Logan on Jan. 27, and is the fourth win in a row in the series, as Hawai'i now leads, 4-3.

Both teams were without their head coaches Sunday, as USU head coach Raegan Pebley did not make the trip after having a baby on Jan. 30. Assistant coach George Brosky was the acting head coach for the fifth time this season, as USU is now 2-3 under Brosky.

Hawai'i head coach Jim Bolla has been on medical leave since Feb. 3, and associate coach Pat Charity is the interim head coach.

Junior guard Taylor Richards led Utah State with 19 points, including 12 in the second half. Richards, the shortest player on the Aggies' roster at 5-4, led the team with seven rebounds.

Senior forward Brittany Phillips netted 17 points in the first half, but was limited to just one point in the second half to finish with 18. It was the sixth-straight game and 10th in last 11 that Phillips has posted double-figures. Phillips tied a career-high by hitting four three-pointers.

USU was out-rebounded 42-26, including 19 offensive rebounds by Hawai'i, which led to a 25-4 UH advantage in second chance points. The 16-rebound difference is the second-largest this season for the Aggies, as they were out-rebounded by 22 on two different occasions, Jan. 15 at La Tech and Jan. 24 at Boise State. USU is now 4-11 when being out-rebounded by the opposition.

The Aggies shot a season-high for field goal percentage in a half, hitting 54.5 percent (12-22) of their shots from the field, including 5-10 (50 percent) from three-point range, as USU was only down 35-32 at the half.

UH opened the second half with a 7-0 spurt and USU never got close from there on out.

In the second half, USU shot just 30.8 percent (8-26) from the field, finishing the game 20-48 (41.7 percent), going 6-19 (31.6 percent) from behind the arc. The Aggies were 17-21 (81.0 percent) at the free throw line.

Hawai'i was 27-59 (45.8 percent) field goal shooting, draining 4-13 (30.8) percent from three-point range and were 21-31 (67.7 percent) at the charity stripe.

SCOUTING NEW MEXICO STATE - The maroon-clad Aggies of New Mexico State have a 10-14 overall and 6-8 WAC record, but has lost four of their last five and six of their last eight, including a 68-51 loss to Utah State at Las Cruces, N.M. on Feb. 5. The maroon-clad Aggies haven't played since last Thursday, when they ended their four-game homestand with a 69-53 loss to La Tech.

NMSU is seventh in the league stats in scoring offense (60.5 ppg) and fourth in scoring defense (64.9 ppg), to rank sixth in scoring margin (-4.3).

Sherell Neal, a 6-0 junior forward, ranks second in the WAC in scoring and leads the league in rebounding with 15.4 ppg and 10.1 rpg, respectively. Neal ranks 22nd in the NCAA in rebounding. In Thursday's loss to La Tech, Neal had a double-12 outing with 12 points and 12 rebounds, her WAC-leading 13th double-double of the season.

Five-eight senior guard Cecilia Russell-Nava leads the WAC and ranks 13th in the NCAA in three-pointers per game, hitting 2.67 (64-210). Russell-Nava averages 11.0 ppg. Thursday against La Tech, Russell-Nava hit two treys to finish with seven points.

NMSU head coach Darin Spence (Marymount College, 1985) is in his fifth year guiding the maroon-clad Aggies. Spence has posted a 44-70 record at NMSU, including 10-19 in WAC play, as the maroon-clad Aggies are fellow sophomores to the league with the navy blue-clad Aggies of USU. Spence is in his 16th year as a collegiate head coach, coaching at the junior college ranks from 1987-2002, with an overall ledger of 359-149.

SERIES HISTORY - Thursday is the 22nd meeting between USU and NMSU, with the maroon-clad Aggies holding a 13-8 advantage. That is the longest standing series between USU and any WAC opponent, as both Aggies joined the WAC last year, and were in the Intermountain Athletic Conference together from 1974-82, as well as being fellow High Country Athletic Conference members from 1984-87, before USU disbanded the program after the 1987 season.

The navy Aggies have won two in a row, as last year's USU win at Las Cruces snapped NMSU's five-game win streak in the series, and the maroon Aggies have won nine of the last 12 meetings. The win was Utah State's lone road win on the season and historic first WAC victory.

THIS SEASON'S FIRST MEETING - Behind senior forward Brittany Phillips' career highs of 25 points and 12 rebounds, Utah State won the battle of the Aggies with a 68-51 win over New Mexico State Monday night at NMSU's Pan American Center at Las Cruces, N.M. A nationally-televised audience witnessed USU snap its eight-game road losing skid.

Utah State was without head coach Raegan Pebley, who gave birth to a baby girl Tuesday. Assistant coach George Brosky was the acting head coach, with assistance from Kristy Flores and Erin Scholz. Monday was the third game that Pebley has missed, but was the navy Aggies' first win under Brosky.

Utah State improves to 8-13 overall and 4-5 in Western Athletic Conference play, and beat New Mexico State for the second time in a row on the maroon-clad Aggies' home court. The win snapped USU's eight-game losing streak, and are now 2-10 overall on the road. Last season's only road win came on the same floor and was USU's historic first WAC victory.

New Mexico State suffered its fourth loss in the last five games, falling to 9-12 overall and 4-5 in WAC action.

Phillips, who hit a season-high three three-pointers, was one of three navy-clad Aggies in double-digits. Junior forward Jamelah Brown tallied 13 points off the bench, hitting a career-high three three-pointers, as USU was 8-22 (36.4 percent) behind the arc. Junior guard Taylor Richards added 12 points.

USU shot 40.7 percent (24-59) from the field, including 13-29 (40.7 percent) in the second half, pulling away from a 35-31 halftime lead. The northern Aggies also were 12-13 (92.3 percent) at the free throw line, paced by 4-4 from Phillips and 3-4 from Richards.

NMSU was 21-62 (33.9 percent) field goal shooting, including 3-11 (27.3 percent) from three-point range and were just 6-12 (50 percent) at the charity stripe.

The southern Aggies were led by Anikia Jawara's 21 points to go with nine rebounds, while Sherell Neal tallied 11 rebounds along with nine points.

USU's reserves out-scored their counterparts, 20-6, and had a 27-14 advantage in points off turnovers, forcing 20 NMSU miscues, compared to only committing 16.

NMSU led 22-15 with 5:30 left in the half, but then USU went on a 13-0 burst, started by Phillips with a layup and ended by Phillips with a jumper with 2:25 to go and put USU ahead, 28-22, and went into halftime leading 35-31.

The maroon Aggies came out of intermission and knotted the score at 38-all, but an 18-3 navy Aggie barrage put the game out of reach.

LAST YEAR AT LOGAN - Ashley Rutledge scored 10 of her team-high 13 points in the second half, but it wasn't enough to overcome the loss of teammate Ali Marchant in the first half as USU lost 55-48 to NMSU on Feb. 2.

Rutledge tried to keep the Aggies in the game scoring USU's first five points of the second half, but after USU gained its first lead of the second period at 35-34, NMSU reeled off a 10-0 run to lead 44-35 with 5:32 left in the game.

Marchant, who had led USU in the first half with nine points on three of four shooting and five rebounds, suffered a mild concussion after playing just 12 minutes. With the 6-3 post player out of the lineup, NMSU went inside to Sherell Neal, who scored a game-high 16 points and pulled down nine rebounds.

Jayci Stone added 12 points for the visitors, while Jenean Ford pulled down a game-best 11 rebounds.

NMSU used an early 10-0 run to gain a 15-5 lead early in the contest, but USU went on its own 11-0 run to gain a 16-15 lead. However, NMSU battled back to take a 24-20 lead at the break.

The two worst shooting teams in the WAC, continued their wayward ways as NMSU shot 35.1 percent and USU connected on just 30.2 percent. USU was just 18-33 from the free throw line as the Aggies could not take advantage of 23 NMSU fouls.

SCOUTING LOUISIANA TECH - The Lady Techsters are 15-11 overall and 10-3 in WAC, and are the hottest team in the WAC this side of Hawai'i (winners of six-straight), as the La Tech has won two in a row and seven of the last eight. After beating New Mexico State, 69-53, on Thursday, La Tech topped Idaho, 78-71, on Saturday. La Tech plays at third-place Fresno State Thursday before coming to Logan.

La Tech is averaging 66.1 ppg, ranking third in the WAC in scoring offense, while yielding 61.1 ppg, ranking second in the league, to rank second in scoring margin (+ 5.0).

Ty Moore, a 6-2 senior forward, leads La Tech and the WAC and ranks 40th in NCAA with 10.1 rpg, as well as 11th in the league in scoring with 12.2 ppg. In Saturday's win over Idaho, Ty Moore had 18 points and 13 rebounds, her 12th double-double of the season which ranks second in the league.

Shan Moore (no relation to Ty Moore) is a 5-10 senior guard and leads La Tech averaging 13.5 ppg, ranking eighth in the WAC, as well as leading the conference with 41.9 percent three-point shooting (39-93). She had 15 points in Saturday's win over Idaho.

La Tech head coach Chris Long (Southern Miss, 1991) is in his second year at the helm of the Lady Techsters, posting a 26-5 mark in his first season. Overall, Long has a 41-16 mark at La Tech, including 25-4 in WAC games, becoming head coach after a six-year stint as an assistant on the Lady Techsters' staff.

SERIES HISTORY - Saturday is the fourth meeting between Utah State and Louisiana Tech, as the Lady Techsters have won all three previous meetings, winning last season, 73-56 at Logan on Feb. 4 and 88-54 at Ruston a week later on Feb. 11, and then 69-54 at Ruston on Jan. 15 of this year.

THIS SEASON'S FIRST MEETING - A 12-3 Louisiana Tech run to open the second half was too much for Utah State to bounce back from, as the Aggies lost to the Lady Techsters, 69-54, in on Jan. 15 at La Tech's Thomas Assembly Center.

USU head coach Raegan Pebley did not make the trip, due to her pregnancy, and assistant coach George Brosky was the acting head coach Monday night.

Senior forward Brittany Phillips and junior forward Jenny Gross led Utah State with 12 points apiece, while junior guard Taylor Richards tallied 10 points to go with a season-high seven assists and tied a season-high with six rebounds. Sophomore guard Danyelle Snelgro chipped in seven points to go with four steals.

The Lady Techsters also had three players in double-figures, led by Eboni Mangum's 13 points to go with five assists, as well as 12 from JoKeirra Sneed off the bench, while Shan Moore tossed in 10 points. Ty Moore snagged 14 rebounds followed by Amber Metoyer's 12 boards.

After La Tech opened the game with a 10-4 lead, Utah State closed to 10-10 after a steal and layup from Snelgro and the two teams traded baskets, with Phillips hitting back-to-back buckets to knot the score at 14-all at the 11:42 mark.

The Lady Techsters then went on a 13-2 streak to take a 27-16 lead. USU closed to 32-27 at the half, just missing to trim the margin even more as senior forward Brittany Hagen's three-pointer rattled out at the buzzer.

The second half opened with a 12-3 La Tech spurt to increase the Aggies' deficit to 44-30 after a layup by La Tech's Tamika Kursh.

Junior forward Jamelah Brown spearheaded an Aggie rally with three points and a steal which led to a fastbreak layup from Richards to pull USU to 46-37, prompting a La Tech timeout. The streak continued with a turnaround jumper from sophomore forward Lindsey Freeze followed by an acrobatic running layup from Richard to cap the 8-0 USU run and pull within 46-41 at 11:48.

That would be the closest the Aggies would get, as the Lady Techsters pushed the gap back up to double-digits at 57-47 with 5:49 and La Tech hit 6-8 from the free throw line in the final minutes to ice the win.

LAST YEAR AT LOGAN - Jessica Freeman led three Utah State players in double-figures with 18 points, but Aarica Ray-Boyd scored 29 points for No. 24 Louisiana Tech as the Lady Techsters walked away with a 73-56 win on Feb. 4, 2006.

The Aggies have now lost 12 straight and sit at 1-17 overall and 0-8 in the WAC. La Tech improved to 16-4 and 8-1 in conference games. Freeman's 18 points came on 5-of-8 shooting from the field and a perfect 8-for-8 from the charity stripe. She also led the Aggies with seven rebounds and two blocks.

Utah State was able to play with La Tech for the first 10 minutes of the game as it trailed by just three points (12-9) at the 9:50 mark of the half. The Lady Techsters then used a 17-4 run over the next eight minutes to take a 29-13 lead with just under two minutes left in the half.

The Aggies then scored 14 straight points, which was more than they had scored in the first 18 minutes of the game, as they went into the locker room down just two, 29-27. The run was capped off by a half court shot by Danyelle Snelgro that banked in at the buzzer.

Ashley Rutledge and Snelgro joined Freeman in double-figure scoring with 11 and 10 respectively. Lindsey Freeze was USU's next highest scorer with six.

USU stayed within six of La Tech for the opening five minutes of the half, but then allowed the visitors to push their lead to double digits and were never able to get closer than eight points the rest of the way.

Ray-Boyd's 29 points came on 7-of-17 from the field, including a 7-for-14 mark from beyond the arc. She also made 8-of-10 from the free throw line. No other Lady Techsler scored in double-figures, but five other players had six or more points.

La Tech out-rebounded the Aggie by just one, 37-36, but grabbed 16 offensive boards to USU's 10. The Aggies also had 29 turnovers to just 17 for the Techsters.

UP NEXT - USU wraps up regular-season action with two games on the road, at Nevada on Thursday, March 1 at 8 p.m. (MT) and at Fresno State on Saturday, March 3. That game time has been changed to 2 p.m. (MT)

-USU-

 

 

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