The Boise State womens basketball team knew it had to play 40 good minutes to knock off Mountain West-leading Colorado State.
On Wednesday, the Broncos had about 20, which wasnt going to cut it against the Rams, who had won 16 of their previous 17 games.
Matching a season-high with 25 turnovers, Boise State saw strong starts in both halves dashed quickly in a 71-51 loss.
Theyre not going to beat themselves, and they didnt (Wednesday) they just whipped us, Boise State coach Gordy Presnell said.
Boise State (14-10, 9-4), which came into the game alone in second place in the Mountain West, had a chance to close the gap with the Rams (21-4, 13-1). Early on, it appeared the Broncos had a shot to do it, making their first five field goals and taking a quick 11-2 lead.
Colorado State had used a zone defense for their prior three games, and did so to start Wednesday, but shifted to man-to-man after trailing early.
Presnell said the Broncos have been better against man-to-man, but Colorado States length presented big problems the Broncos, who came into the game giving up only 15 turnovers per game, had 15 in the first half alone.
I told our team, thats a sign were doing great, theyre getting out of their stuff, and then they just killed us with it, Presnell said.
The Rams ended the first half on a 22-4 run for 26-17 lead at the break. The Broncos made 3-of-19 field goals after their 11-2 lead, and missed all nine first-half 3-point attempts. They had come in ranked No. 1 in conference games, making 39.7 percent of their 3-pointers.
I think it had a lot to do with their length, we got a little intimidated with that, so wed stop attacking and doing what wed normally do, sophomore forward Lexie Der said of the Rams, who played six 6-footers to the Broncos three. we were rushing some of our shots.
Der did all she could to get the Broncos back into the game with 16 of her game-high 20 points in the second half. She cut the lead to 35-31 with 13:28 to go on a layup and the ensuing free throw, but the Rams responded with a 14-4 run. In the second half, Colorado State turned 10 Boise State turnovers into 16 points.
We got a little bit shellshocked, and then we got flat, Presnell said. You cant get flat in a game like this. We had one crack at these guys, and that was it.
Despite Wednesdays loss, the Broncos maintained sole possession of second place with Fresno States 65-60 win over Wyoming on Wednesday.
There may be one more shot for the Broncos to avenge Colorado States 20-point win, which is its average margin in its 14 Mountain West games the Mountain West tournament next month.
Its frustrating, but were going to make it the finals of that tournament, were going to change that, and its not going to be the same game as this one, thats for sure, Der said.