Roberts, Rusk Power Cowgirls in WNIT Opener
LARAMIE – Senior Liv Roberts finished off his final regular season with the Cowgirls by being selected the MWC Player of the Year. Roberts, however, wants to add another chapter to her Cowgirls basketball career., and she made a statement along those lines in the Cowgirls 67-59 victory over WAC champion New Mexico State in the opening round of the WNIT at the AA.
Roberts scored a career-high 28 points, a key part of why the Cowgirls will not host the second round WNIT against against Cal-Davis at the AA at 2 p.m., Sunday.
“Well I think is that’s what postseason is all about,” Cowgirls coach Joe Legerski said. “The teams that are playing have won a great deal throughout the season. New Mexico State was the regular season champion of the Western Athletic Conference. We were in control in the first half. They made a run, got the game down to three points, then Taylor (Rusk) really made some big plays. Her steal out on top, finish for the layup gave us a five point lead and got the crowd in to it. The crowd was just tremendous tonight and added a lot of energy. I also knew that Liv (Roberts) was excited to play in her first post-season game. You saw a senior really step up. She felt comfortable. To have (28) points and shoot perfect from the field tells you she was focused.”
Roberts also had six rebounds. Rusk scored 16 points and Bailee Cotton had 10 points and seven rebounds. Senior Natalie Baker had eight rebounds.
New Mexico State was led by junior Brooke Salas with 21 points and eight rebounds. Sophomore Gia Pack followed with 20 points followed by sophomore Aaliyah Prince with 11 points. The Aggies were 22-of-58 (.379) from the field and 12-of-15 (.800) from the charity stripe.
Roberts led all scorers with 22 points and didn't miss a shot. She 7-for-7 from the field, including three three-pointers, and 5-for-5 on free throws.
The Cowgirls, meanwhile, made New Mexico State struggle from the field. The Aggies were 11-for-29 (.379), hitting only one of 13 three-point shots.