It took an out-of-state tournament to revive an in-state rivalry.
The Idaho and Boise State women’s basketball teams met for the first time since 2011 at the 2018 Beach Classic on Friday in Long Beach, California.
The Broncos withstood a game-high 30 points from Big Sky preseason MVP Mikayla Ferenz for a 91-85 victory over the Vandals at Walter Pyramid Arena.
Ferenz scored 28 of her 30 points and all four of her 3-pointers in the first half as the Vandals went into the break with a 47-44 lead.
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The Broncos and Vandals played every season from 1974-75 to 2010-11, with their last meeting coming in the 2011 WAC Tournament. After Friday’s game, Boise State leads the overall series 35-31 and ends a streak of three straight loss to the Vandals.
“It’s a great win,” Boise State coach Gordy Presnell told 1350 AM in a postgame radio interview. “They’re run-away favorites in the Big Sky Conference.”
Junior guards Braydey Hodgins and Ellie Woerner each scored 23 points for Boise State. Woerner was 4-for-6 from 3-point range, including a triple and five made free throws in the final 1:16.
“Our coaches told us about the rivalry, and they didn’t need to hype us up for this game,” Woerner told Chris Lewis with 1350 AM. “Even though we’re playing in California, it’s an in-state rival. We want to beat them just as much as they want to beat us, and we got it done tonight.”
Boise State (5-1) followed up its rivalry win by edging Northern Iowa 61-60 on Saturday afternoon, earning the title of Beach Classic champion. Junior guards Riley Lupfer and Jayde Christopher were each named to the all-tournament team.
The Broncos’ next game is Saturday, Dec. 1, at Washington State. Tipoff is 2 p.m. MT in Pullman, Washington.
NNU men stun Idaho
The NNU men’s basketball team earned its first non-exhibition win against a Division I program in the school’s modern history Friday — upsetting the Idaho Vandals in their own Boise event. NNU won 77-73 on the opening night of the Vandal Holiday Hoops Showcase at CenturyLink Arena.
The Nighthawks shot 60.7 percent from the field after halftime and erased a nine-point, second-half deficit.
“That’s lit. I didn’t know that. That’s crazy,” NNU junior Adonis Arms said in an NNU press release about the historic win.
Arms scored a team-high 21 points. Trevon Allen led Idaho with 24 points.
On Saturday night, NNU (5-1) dropped its first game of the season, 91-75, to Portland State.