After taking down the same team it did twice in the regular season, Idaho women’s basketball advances to the Big Sky Championship game.
Idaho beat Portland State Vikings in a great offensive display, with both teams scoring in bunches and keeping the score close from start to finish with a final score of 102-99.
Idaho moves on to the Big Sky Championship game against Northern Colorado.
Idaho had four different players in double figures, with 5’7” junior guard Taylor Pierce leading the charge with a team-high 31 points and a Big Sky tournament record nine 3-pointers and officially broke the NCAA record for 3-pointers in a season, totaling 130 on the season.
The Vandals also had 31 assists in the game, setting a new season high.
Idaho came out hot in the first quarter, shooting above 60 percent from the field. Pierce went 3-4 from behind the arc for a quick nine points.
Portland State managed to shoot a solid 45 percent from the field to keep things close during the opening period but Idaho led at the end of the first quarter, 30-23.
The scoring didn’t stop there though. The Vandals and Vikings continued to trade blows before halftime.
Portland State had a well-rounded attack, with no player scoring in double digits but still able to cut the Vandal lead to one point. Idaho went cold from behind the arc, only shooting 3-12 in the second, but the team still had three different scorers in double figures in the first half and were able to keep the lead 49-48 going into the break.
The second half had just as great of an offensive performance from Idaho and Portland State, with both teams going on runs to lead up to a very intense finish.
The Viking’s Ashley Bolston made a clutch steal with just 15 seconds remaining which led to a bucket, cutting the Vandal lead to just two.
Senior post Geraldine McCorkell was able to hit a total of four from the line to lock in the lead and secure the win.
The Vikings had six players score in double digits, led by Bolston, who had 26 points on 7-17 from the field and went 100 percent from the free throw line, hitting a total of 11.
The Vandals also had several players who had big nights, including sophomore post Isabelle Hadden setting a new season high in points with 18. Junior guard Mikayla Ferenz finished with a near triple double with 22 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds.
Idaho will move on to the Big Sky championship game where they will face off with No. 1 seed Northern Colorado
12:05 p.m. Saturday in Reno, Nevada.
Zack Kellogg can be reached at email@example.com