It’s never easy beating a team three times in one season, and the Fresno State women’s basketball team proved that again Tuesday as Colorado State beat the Bulldogs 71-55 in the Mountain West tournament quarterfinals.
The Rams pulled away from a 26-26 halftime tie with a 21-11 third quarter and overall took advantage of poor shooting by Fresno State at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas.
Now the postseason is in doubt for a Bulldogs team that’s 16-14 overall. Last year’s 18-15 team that reached the Mountain West championship game didn’t play in a postseason tournament, which ended a streak of 10 straight years.
Fresno State junior guard Candice White, named to the all-conference first team Monday, was held to eight points on 4-of-13 shooting. Significantly, she never got to the free throw line, negating the impact that one of the nation’s best foul shooters (93.6 percent) can have.
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With White bottled up, freshmen Aly Gamez (13 points on 4-of-13 shooting) and Maddi Utti (10 on 3 of 9) led the offense. Gamez had team highs of nine rebounds and five assists.
The Bulldogs were 18 of 55 (32.7 percent) from the field, 5 of 17 on 3-pointers.
Colorado State got double-figure scoring from four of five starters.
The teams tied for fourth place in the Mountain West regular season, but Fresno State beat the Rams 56-45 on Jan. 6 at home and 75-64 on Feb. 17 in Fort Collins.