Two losses at the Al Kaly Classic over the weekend in Pueblo, Colo., dropped the New Mexico Highlands women's basketball team to 0-3 on the season.
On Friday, Cameron (Okla.) edged the Cowgirls 77-67, and on Saturday, Willamette (Ore.) downed NMHU 86-57.
On the bright side, Highlands wing Oliana Seanoa earned recognition on the all-tournament team.
Highlands led at several stages of the Cameron game. Pasha Cornish scored eight of her game-high 15 points in the early going as NMHU took a 10-4 lead. After Cameron took the lead on a 10-2 run, Rosalyn Wilson hit two shots from long range to help the Cowgirls go back in front 20-14. A bit of foul trouble, however, enabled Cameron to tie the game at 34 and take a 38-34 edge at the half.
Seanoa's three-pointer returned control to Highlands, 39-38, 28 seconds into the second half. But down the stretch, Cameron's accurate free throw shooters made the difference in an otherwise close contest. Ten unanswered points gave Cameron a 48-41 cushion. Briana Gholston's old-fashioned three-point play knotted the game at 52 apiece, but Highlands could not sustain the run. Back-to-back buckets by Amber Schroeder gave Cameron its largest lead, 68-58, with 4:34 left.
Cornish finished with a game-high 15 points. Seanoa had 12 plus six rebounds and three steals. Valerie Cook came off the bench to score 11. And Gholston had nine points and nine boards; Patricia Lewis had nine and eight, respectively.
Seanoa was a force in Saturday's loss to Willamette, scoring 21 points on eight-of-22 shooting; she also grabbed seven boards. Cook again provided a spark off the bench, tallying a double-double with 13 points and 13 rebounds.
Poor shooting doomed the Cowgirls, who connected on just 26 percent of their shots compared to Willamette's 43. Still, NMHU trailed by a manageable 38-26 at the break.
Next for the Cowgirls and first-year coach Tiffany Darling: Tuesday night’s game at College of the Southwest.