LAS VEGAS – Boise State’s Mountain West quarterfinal matchup with No. 3 seed Colorado State Monday night was much different and more competitive than the two previous matchups in the regular season.
The end result was the same.
After losing two regular season matchups by a combined 35 points, the Broncos hung tough and even held a 1-point lead entering the fourth quarter before eventually falling 59-52 to the Rams at the Thomas and Mack Center.
The biggest issue was one that plagued the Broncos all season long – turnovers. Boise State had 18 turnovers, including six in the fourth quarter, which led to 16 Colorado State points in the 7-point loss.
“We throw it to the other team as well as anyone,” coach Gordy Presnell said. “We’re going to make a lot of mistakes, we’re really young.”
The Broncos led 43-42 entering the fourth quarter and went scoreless for the first 3:47 of the quarter, allowing the Rams to retake the lead and hold momentum heading into the final stretch.
Boise State was able to cut a five-point Ram lead to two points with 2:33 thanks to a 3-point jumper from Mya Hansen, but Colorado State retaliated with a 7-2 run to end the game and close the door on the 2022-23 season for the Broncos.
“We fought the entire game so I’m really proud of our team,” Freshman Natalie Pasco, who finished with a team-high 15 points said. “We’ll definitely be ready next year, we’ll be back.”
On the positive side of the loss, Boise State controlled the glass throughout the game, out-rebounding the Rams by a sizeable 51-32 – a potential glimpse of good things to come for the Broncos with the opportunity for nearly the whole Boise State roster to return in 2023-24.
Forward Abby Muse hauled in a game-high 11 boards for the Broncos to pair with 13 points.
The Broncos had four true freshmen play significant minutes throughout the season, making one all but wonder the potential Boise State has next year with a full season now under their belt.
“I have a lot of optimism about the future of our program … they’re all back if they want to be back for two more years,” Presnell said. “We have the chance to do something. Now we’ve got to go to work.”
Boise State finishes the season with a 17-16 overall record, a significant jump from the 8-21 record the Broncos put out in 2021-22.
“I’m proud of this group and I’m excited to move forward with them,” Hansen told Bronco Nation News.
Linked below for your convenience is the Lithia Ford of Boise Postgame Show, where B.J. Rains and Collin Mitchell break down the game with interviews and more.
— Mountain West (@MountainWest) March 7, 2023