The University of Idaho women’s basketball team learned things the hard way on Saturday, everything in Texas is in fact bigger. The longer—Longhorns jumped out in front of the Vandals in the first half and never looked back, defeating Idaho 87-58.
Texas (9-3) used a 19-0 first half run to put the game out of reach early. Idaho was held off the scoreboard for close to nine minutes. Junoir Stacey Barr hit a three-point basket to get the Vandals within three at 10-7 with 16:14 to play in the first half. Texas then proceed to score the next 19 points, leading 29-7 with 7:44 left in the half. UT extended its lead to 36-14 with 4:20 to play in the first half. Headed into the break, Idaho established a bit of a rhythm, cutting the lead to 14 off an Addie Schivo three-pointer, 40-26.
“Texas’s size really hurt us in the first,” head coach Jon Newlee stated. “Their length really bothered us like no other team this season. I was really proud of our girls. We had great open looks to start the game just couldn’t get them to fall. Texas light it up in the first half. We had good execution just could not get the results.”
Idaho (7-7) narrowed the Longhorns' lead to 12 at the start of the second half, but Texas did not let off the gas, shooting 54.1 percent (20-of-27) in the final 20 minutes. Nneka Enemkpali finished with 21 points and 10 rebounds for Texas.
Senior Alyssa Charlston and Barr both scored in double figures. Charlston finished with 13 points and seven boards. Barr added 12 points and three assists.
Overall Texas was 45.2 percent from the field, compared to Idaho’s 33.3 percent. The Longhorns out-rebounded Idaho, 50-33.
Freshman point guard Karlee Wilson played 12 minutes in the first half, recording a season high five rebounds. She left the game in the first with an injury and did not return. The already thin Idaho bench was outscored, 44-18.
The Silver and Gold will now turn their focus to the Western Athletic Conference. Idaho will begin WAC play on Thursday, Jan. 2 at Kansas City.
“We will take the positives away from today and move forward,” Newlee said. “We talked about how the preseason is over and how we played a lot of top teams to get us ready for the WAC. We know we will play teams with size moving forward. We played all sorts of teams in the preseason and we will know how to prepare for them in WAC play.”
Idaho will travel from Kansas City to Chicago State on Jan. 4. The Vandals first home conference game is set for Thursday, Jan. 9 against UTPA.