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As the minutes dwindled off the clock at the ConvocationCenter Saturday, Jan. 26 the UTSA women’s basketball team desperately tried topull together for a win against the Idaho Vandals but missed shot after missedshot flew through the air to secure the Roadrunners their first loss in thelast four games. “I thought we looked tired,” said coach Ripptoe-Blair afterthe game, “We played with so much emotion the other night, but you’ve got to beable to bring it every night.” The team’s exhaustion was evident across theboard, as no players scored in the double digits and their field goalpercentage was at a low 27 percent. Additionally, the team allowed the Vandalsto put up 64 points, up 10 from their season average of 54.4 points per game.

The ‘Runners were off their game from tipoff, immediatelyallowing the Vandals a 5-0 run. The Vandals led the entire game, with the onlyexception being the ‘Runners one point lead about halfway through the firsthalf. According to Rippetoe-Blair, “It’s not lack of effort, it’s just thatyou’ve got to give [the Vandals] credit. They hit big shots, which is what theydo.”

The Vandals are, indeed, known for making big shots. Theirthree point percentage is an impressive 61 percent, a weapon they used againstthe Roadrunners, making 30 points from behind the arch. “[The Roadrunners] areso tough defensively, I thought we had to be patient tonight,” said Vandalscoach Jon Newlee, “and I thought we were moving the basketball really well,being patient and taking what they gave us.”

Saturday’s game was the first time the Roadrunners havemet the Vandals since 1984, when the ‘Runners fell to the Vandals 68 – 67. Bothteams, however, are projected to make it to the women’s bracket of the WesternAthletic Conference in Las Vegas in March. Rippetoe-Blair is optimistic aboutthe teams meeting next time. “When we get an opportunity to play them again,we’ll have a different game plan than we did tonight.”

Saturday’sgame was the first time the Roadrunners have met the Vandals since 1984, whenthe ‘Runners fell to the Vandals 68 – 67. Both teams, however, are projected tomake it to the women’s bracket of the Western Athletic Conference in Las Vegasin March. Ripptoe-Blair is optimistic about the teams meeting next time. “Whenwe get an opportunity to play them again, we’ll have a different game plan thanwe did tonight.”

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