* University of Wyoming Athletics media relations release

LOGAN, Utah -- Utah State had arguably its best offensive and shooting game of the season Saturday afternoon as the Wyoming Cowgirl basketball team dropped its contest in Logan, 76-66.

Allyson Fertig got off to a good start, scoring the game’s first five points and pulling down three rebounds during that span to give UW the early lead. However, Utah State would respond with hot shooting from beyond-the-arc, hitting four 3-pointers in consecutive trips to take a 12-7 lead.

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Following the first quarter media timeout, the Aggies continued their strong offensive effort while the Cowgirls struggled on that end and trailed 23-12 after one. USU closed the quarter on a 23-7 run after the strong opening for Wyoming.

In the second, it was Wyoming’s turn to find its offensive rhythm, thanks in large part to Quinn Weidemann’s eight early points in the frame, forcing a USU timeout with 7:24 left in the half with the Cowgirls trimming the deficit to 27-22. Wyoming would cut the deficit to within two, 29-27 but the Aggies would once again push the lead out, lengthening the lead to 40-31 in the later stages of the half.

UW would get a pair of layups in the final minute of the half, including a last-second steal by Tommi Olson, who hit Weidemann for a fast-break layup as the buzzer sounded and the Cowgirls trailed 40-35 at halftime. Weidemann scored 10 points in the frame. USU shot 55.6-percent from the floor in the first half and hit 7-of-12 from 3-point range.

The Aggies began the second half just like it did the game, shooting lights-out in the third quarter, extending the lead up to as many as 15. UW meanwhile struggled to get the offense going in the third and trailed 57-47 with one quarter to play. Utah State cooled a little on the offensive end and Tess Barnes hit back-to-back 3-pointers as the Cowgirls got back within single digits before USU would get an offensive put back to end the frame.

In the fourth, Wyoming cut the deficit to 59-53 with 6:51 remaining, but back-to-back 3-pointers from Utah State extended the lead back out to double digits quickly. The Cowgirls would get to within single digits a few times in the fourth but didn’t quite have enough down the stretch. The Aggies salted things away late at the free-throw line.

Fertig notched her fourth double-double of the season in the loss as she led the way for the Cowgirls with 17 points and 12 rebounds. McKinley Bradshaw and Weidemann also finished in double figures on the day, scoring 15 and 14, respectively. Weidemann also added four steals on the defensive end. Barnes and Emily Mellema had nice games as Barnes had eight points and grabbed a pair of boards while Mellema chipped in with six points and had two steals.

For the game, UW shot 35.8-percent and hit just 5-of-26 from 3-point range. The Aggies, meanwhile, hit 42.4-percent from the field and knocked down 13-of-24 (54.2-percent) from deep.

UW will return home next week for a pair of games. The Cowgirls open the week Jan. 26 at 6:30 p.m., as Boise State comes to Laramie for a game that was originally scheduled for Jan. 3. The Cowgirls then close the month Jan. 29 against Nevada at 2 p.m.

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