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The Casper College women’s basketball team saw its 21-game winning streak come to an end at the most inopportune time, losing in the first round of the NJCAA Division I Championship on Monday in Lubbock, Texas.

The 13th-ranked Thunderbirds (31-3), who were seeded No. 10, led No. 23 South Georgia Tech throughout, but the Jets rallied late to force overtime. South Georgia Tech (29-5) outscored Casper College 17-5 in the extra session to win 77-65.

The T-Birds led 60-57 with 1:57 to play on Lucie Hoskova’s layup, but they missed two 3-point attempts and turned the ball over on their last three possessions of regulation. The Jets tied the game at 60-all on a three-point play by Houfat Mahouchiza with 14 seconds remaining.

Hoskova led the T-Birds with 22 points and 13 rebounds. Paula Orenes Sanchez added 10 points, but no other player scored in double figures.

Casper College shot just 30.6 percent (22 of 72) from the field while South Georgia Tech was 25 of 66 for 35.9 percent.

After the teams played on even terms for the first quarter, the T-Birds closed the first half on a 19-8 run to lead 34-24 at the half.

The increased the margin to 39-26 early in the third quarter on a basket by sophomore Emily Robertson (Natrona County) before the Jets outscored the T-Birds 17-5 to trail just 44-43 heading into the fourth quarter.

South Georgia Tech had four players finish in double figures, led by Alyssa Nieves with 21.

The loss was the T-Birds’ first since a 77-72 defeat at Western Nebraska Community College on Dec. 5.


Sports Editor

Jack Nowlin returned to the Star-Tribune in 2007 after eight years covering Michigan State University athletics. A Wyoming native, and a graduate of Jeffrey City High School and the University of Wyoming, Jack serves as the Star-Tribune’s sports editor.

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