The Idaho women’s basketball team came up short against Oregon Tuesday in Eugene. The Vandals dominated the fourth quarter, shutting down Oregon (10-2) and closing the score gap to three.
Idaho head coach Jon Newlee said he was proud of the way the team executed plays.
“What a great comeback,” Newlee said in a news release. “I told the team in the locker room, ‘We could have quit.’ It is the game before Christmas, we could have packed it in. I thought we did all the things right, that earlier in the year cost us games like this.”
The first 30 minutes of the game was controlled by Oregon. The Ducks stole the lead from Idaho just three minutes into the game where they held tight for the remainder of play.
The Vandals started to step up in the final quarter of the game.
Idaho was behind by 18 points early in the fourth and turned it around with a 17-point rally.
With 6:06 left to play, redshirt junior post Brooke Reilly kickstarted the Vandals with two shots from the line and a jumper for an extra two.
From there, Idaho added 9 points streak before shutting the Ducks down near the two-minute mark.
A few missed 3-pointers left Idaho behind Oregon at the buzzer.
Sophomore guard Mikayla Ferenz and junior post Geraldine McCorkell led Idaho, with 23 points apiece.
The Vandals finished the night shooting 88 percent from the charity stripe.
Idaho took advantage of Oregon’s turnovers, outscoring the Ducks 15-8 in points off of turnovers, 6-0 in the fourth quarter alone.
Newlee was pleased with his starters.
“I thought our lineup in the fourth did great,” Newlee said. “Both Mikayla and Geri were exhausted so we had to go to the bench. I thought they came in and played tough defensively and got things going.”
Idaho plays Lewis-Clark State College 6 p.m. Dec. 27 in the Cowan Spectrum.
Meredith Spelbring can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org