Despite breaking expectations all year, the Wolverines fell short in their final regular season game of the year to CSU Bakersfield 92-73 on March 9.
Both teams, entering the game with 8-7 conference records, had high hopes of pulling out the win so they could secure a higher seed in the WAC Basketball Tournament. However, UVU got down early and was never quite able to fight their way back into the game.
After UVU took an initial 6-5 lead to start the game, the Roadrunners responded with a 12-3 run before ending the first quarter with a 28-16 advantage. By time they entered the half, CSU Bakersfield had more than doubled that lead, going into the break with a 56-36 edge. While both teams shot well in the first half, senior Alexxus Gilbert and freshman Ashley Austin were exceptional for the Roadrunners, hitting four treys apiece and ending with 16 and 14 points, respectively. Freshman Eve Braslis led UVU with nine points.
The second half was more evenly matched, as UVU managed to outscore their opponent 37-36 during that time. However, they failed to ever substantiate enough of a comeback to make the game competitive, as the margin never fell below 19. During that period, junior Jordan Holland finished with a team-high eight points and freshman Madison Grange grabbed five rebounds.
Gilbert ended the game with 24 points and eight assists for CSU Bakersfield. Braslis and Holland led the Wolverines with 16 points apiece.
With their regular season now over, UVU now looks ahead to WAC Tournament. The Wolverines recorded first-round victories during the tournament in 2016 and 2017, but have never advanced past the semi-final round. They will open the tournament this year by playing UMKC in the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, Nev. on March 13 at 3:30 p.m.
Photo courtesy of UVU Athletics
I put more miles on my running shoes in high school than my car, I love playing basketball and my ukulele, and I have lived in eight states.