Erica Martinez scored a career-high 34 points, including 13 points in an early second-half run, as the College of Idaho stunned NCAA Division I Utah State 86-81 inside the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum in Logan, Utah.
The win for the Coyotes (6-6), who played the game as an exhibition, was their second-ever against a Division I opponent. The C of I defeated Weber State, 69-65, in 2008. The Coyotes improved to 2-16 all-time against Division I teams and logged their first win against a Mountain West Conference team.
The C of I had a 10-point, second-half lead, but the Aggies (6-5), rallied to tie the game at 79-79 on a pair of Jennifer Schlott free throws with 90 seconds remaining. The Yotes came right back, breaking a half-court trap for a Chakala Carthen lay-up and Elisha Hensey beat an expiring shot clock with a 10-foot runner to extend the lead to 83-79 inside the final minute.
Utah State went 2 for 4 from the foul line to cut the lead in half and, following a Coyote turnover, had a chance to tie. But Schlott missed a driving lay-up, then Makenlee Williams missed a contested three as C of I sealed the win at the free-throw line.
The Aggies led early 15-13 after a Williams 3, but the C of I got 3s from Martinez and Aleah Lowber and a driving lay-up by Sienna Edmunson in an 8-0 run to take a 21-15 lead. USU used a late 8-0 run before halftime to retake the lead at 45-41 at the break.
A Schlott lay-up in transition gave the Aggies a 47-43 early in the second half. But Martinez led a 19-6 Coyote run with 11 points — including a trio of 3-point baskets as the C of I took a 62-53 lead with 14 minutes remaining. Martinez hit her eighth three of the night to give the Yotes their largest lead at 72-62.
Martinez added 10 rebounds in the victory as the Yotes connected on 14 3-point baskets. Carthen had 17 points and 12 rebounds, Hensey had 12 points, 11 rebounds, and seven assists, with Lowber scoring 15 points before fouling out late.