Despite a career-high 33 points from guard Dellena Criner, the University of Nevada women’s basketball team suffered its first WAC loss of the season, falling 82-74 at Boise State Saturday night. With the loss Nevada falls to 12-5 overall and 3-1 in the WAC while Boise State improved to 11-6 and 3-2.
Boise State opened the game taking an 11-4 lead with 14:20 remaining despite not hitting a shot from the field for the first three minutes of the game. Criner and Bre`Anna Henry scored on back-to-back possessions coming out of the first media time out to cut Boise State’s lead to 11-8 with 13:40 remaining in the first half.
The Pack took its first lead of the game, 15-14, after Johnna Ward drained a three-pointer with 12:04 left in the first half. The Pack and the Broncos traded baskets until Mikail Price and Criner each hit long three pointers to put Nevada up 21-16 with 7:52 left in the first half.
Nevada went up by five 25-20 with 6:21 remaining on a pair of free throws by Cherlanda Franklin. Boise State battled back to tie the game at 27-27 with 4:05 left in the first half and the two teams went into the half tied at 31-31.
Boise State extended its lead to 44-39 with 15:37 remaining in the game before Criner’s three pointer pulled Nevada to within two, 44-42, with just over 15 minutes left in the game. The Pack retook the lead 49-48 with 12:14 remaining on a pair of free throws from Criner.
The Pack shot 30 percent (9-of-30) from the floor in the first half and 83.3 percent (10-of-12) from the free throw line. The Broncos shot 32.0 percent (8-of-25) from the floor.
Jennifer Gross’ putback with 9:07 put the Pack up by five, 56-51 before Boise State’s Tasha Harris hit three’s on consecutive possessions for the Broncos to retake the lead 57-56.
Boise State went up 71-65 with just under four minutes to play before Criner’s layup on the next possession cut the Broncos lead to 71-67.
Criner ended the game scoring a career-high 33 points on 10-of-17 shooting from the floor. Gross scored a career-high 10 points and added a team-high eight rebounds for Nevada while Ward also scored 10 for the Pack. Franklin, who played all 40 minutes for the Pack, pulled down five rebounds and added three steals.
Nevada ended the game shooting 37.1 percent (23-of-62) from the floor while Boise State finished the game shooting 45.3 percent (24-of-53) from the floor.
Nevada will return home and continue WAC play Thursday hosting La Tech at 6 p.m.