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With road sweep of Utah State, Boise State women lock in eighth straight winning season

With road sweep of Utah State, Boise State women lock in eighth straight winning season

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Boise women

Freshman forward Alexis Mark, right, had seven points and a team-best 13 rebounds in Boise State’s 81-72 win over Utah State on Saturday at Dee Glen Smith Spectrum in Logan, Utah.

No matter what happens from here on out, the Boise State women’s basketball team has locked up its eighth consecutive winning season.

Despite a freshman-heavy roster, the Broncos completed their first road sweep of the season with an 81-72 victory over Utah State on Saturday at Dee Glen Smith Spectrum in Logan, Utah.

“One of the goals coming down here was it was our last chance to win two on the road,” Boise State coach Gordy Presnell told Chris Lewis in a postgame radio interview on 1350 AM. “We hadn’t done that all year, so I was glad that we did it.”

Boise State has scored 81 points or more in three of its last four games to improve to 12-7 overall and 9-7 in Mountain West play. The Broncos are also beginning to find their touch from 3-point range, highlighted by true freshman Anna Ostlie’s 8-for-18 performance against the Aggies (4-15, 2-12 MW).

Ostlie missed the Broncos’ first four games of the season while completing her recovery from a torn ACL she sustained her senior year in high school. She scored 12 points in each game at Utah State with identical 4-for-9 shooting from beyond the arc.

“Having Anna back more healthy than she’s been all year, that’s really helped, too,” Presnell said.

“She’s a lights-out shooter. Then we got a bonus of Cristina (Gil) hitting a couple, so it was a good night for us from the three. It created some separation for us, and we held on there at the end.”

Junior guard Jade Loville — the No. 3 scorer in the Mountain West — paced four Broncos in double figures with 18 points. Redshirt senior Mallory McGwire notched her fifth double-double of the season with 15 points and 10 rebounds, and freshman forward Abby Muse had 10 points, six rebounds and two blocked shots. Freshman Alexis Mark pulled down a team-best 13 boards to go with seven points.

Freshman point guard Mary Kay Naro followed up her school-record 16 assists on Thursday with nine more on Saturday. The Beaverton, Oregon, product finished the two-game series with 24 assists and just four turnovers.

The Broncos wrap up their Mountain West regular-season schedule with a two-game series next week against San Diego State. The games are scheduled for 2 p.m. Friday and 1 p.m. Sunday at ExtraMile Arena. A live stream of both games is available at BroncoSports.com/mwn, or listen on 1350 AM.

The 2021 Mountain West Tournament runs March 7-10 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas. The top six teams in the conference standings receive a first-round bye. Boise State, which features a roster with 10 freshmen, is currently in fifth place. The Broncos have won four straight conference tournament championships.

“A lot of that is our assistant coaches have done a great job identifying recruits,” Presnell said. “We’ve had good play, and they’ve bonded well together. I think we are starting to get a little better. It’s hard with a lot of freshmen, but we’ve had pretty good leadership. Jade Loville and Mallory have had real good seasons. They’re starting to mature a little bit and feeling the grind a little bit as well.

“Hopefully this next week we get some people in the stands and some parents can be there. It will be rejuvenating.”

BOISE ST. 81, UTAH ST. 72

BOISE STATE (12-7, 9-7 MW)

Jade Loville 7-15 4-4 18; Mallory McGwire 5-15 3-5 15; Anna Ostlie 4-9 0-0 12; Abby Muse 5-5 0-2 10; Alexis Mark 3-8 1-2 7; Elodie Lalotte 3-9 1-2 7; Cristina Gil 2-4 0-0 6; Mary Kay Naro 1-6 4-6 6; Martina Machalova 0-0 0-0 0; Kimora Sykes 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 30-73 13-21 81.

UTAH STATE (4-15, 2-12 MW)

Emmie Harris 6-13 1-5 16; Monique Pruitt 7-18 1-2 15; Shyla Latone 4-11 2-3 13; Jessica Chatman 5-11 0-0 12; Faith Brantley 3-6 3-3 10; Taylor Franson 2-6 0-0 4; Emily Jarrell 1-3 0-0 2; Kinley Falslev 0-0 0-0 0; Kama Kamakawiwo’ole 0-6 0-0 0. Totals 28-74 7-13 72.

Boise State 20 27 15 19 — 81

Utah State 10 27 10 25 — 72

3-point goals — Boise State 8-21 (Ostlie 4-9; McGwire 2-6; Gil 2-3; Naro 0-2; Sykes 0-1), Utah State 9-25 (Latone 3-8; Harris 3-7; Chatman 2-4; Brantley 1-1; Pruitt 0-3; Kamakawiwo’ole 0-2). Fouled out — None. Rebounds — Boise State 53 (Mark 13), Utah State 43 (Pruitt 13). Assists — Boise State 24 (Naro 9), Utah State 15 (Harris 5). Total fouls — Boise State 16, Utah State 19. Technical fouls — None. A — 291.

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