5,000 screaming fans of New Mexico State made the afternoon very hostile for the Boise State ladies.
Super sub Rebecca Kepilino worked to get open shots only to see them go in and out.
Boise State shot 17 percent in the first half.
Oh yeah. Boise State won 49-46 to capture the Western Athletic Conference Tournament Championship in Las Cruces, New Mexico.
Tasha Harris took things into her own hands this afternoon with the Broncos behind a 13-17 New Mexico State team throughout the afternoon. With six minutes remaining, Harris penetrated deep into the heart of the Aggie defense three straight times to score baskets and get free throws. Harris gave the Broncos their first lead since the opening minutes at 43-42.
Yet the Broncos still could not shake the determined home team, which undoubtedly benefitted a good deal from their crowd. The Aggies were in the game until the end. Boise State star Jessica Thompson, still feeling the effects of a three-week long illness, walked to the line and calmly hit a free throw with eight seconds left to give the Broncos their 49-46 lead. Thanks to Thompson, all the Aggies could do was put up a desperation 3-pointer that missed and the Broncos could begin their celebration.
Coach Gordy Presnell's Broncos somehow found a way to win, getting their school-record 24th victory of the season. Thanks to sheer determination, the Lady Broncos are headed to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since the 1994-1995 season. Their seed and first-round opponent will be announced tommorow.
Harris finished with 13 points to lead the Broncos. Kepilino was able to get 12 rebounds and 6-3 junior Amanda Stewart of Marsing was sensational off the bench in relieving senior Michelle Hessing. Stewart delivered key buckets to keep the Broncos in the game when no one else was hitting, finishing with 8 points and 7 rebounds. Jackie Thompson also attacked the boards with 8 rebounds for Boise State.
Congratulations to Coach Gordy Presnell and the determined Boise State Lady Broncos--2007 WAC Champions!