POCATELLO, Idaho – Idaho State shot 52.3 percent from the floor while holding the Hornets to 33.3 percent shooting and the Sacramento State women's basketball team lost, 81-61, in a Big Sky Conference game at Reed Gym.
The Hornets (16-11, 11-7 Big Sky) and Bengals (17-10, 12-6) entered the game tied for third in the league standings along with Eastern Washington. The Eagles also won on Saturday, pushing the Hornets to fifth. The Big Sky Conference Tournament runs from March 14-16 and features the top seven teams in the standings. Sacramento State has already secured a spot and would play EWU in the first round if the season ended today.
On Saturday against Idaho State, the Hornets found themselves in an early hole, down 20-9, with 11:47 left in the first half. Sacramento State went on a 15-4 run to tie it up at 24-24 with 5:08 remaining before halftime but Idaho State pushed back ahead and held a 41-32 advantage at the break.
Idaho State continued to pull ahead after halftime and never led by less than seven points in the second half before winning by a 20-point margin.
The Bengals grabbed 13 more rebounds than the Hornets and had a 42-24 edge on points in the paint.
Senior Kylie Kuhns shined once again for the Hornets, posting a game-high 22 points on 9-of-12 shooting with seven rebounds. Kuhns became the Big Sky's all-time rebound champion when she reached 1,175 boards with 20 against Weber State on Thursday night.
Fantasia Hilliard added 12 points while Natasha Torgerson had seven off the bench.
Idaho State featured four players in double figures, led by Jessa Jeppesen and Ashleigh Vella's team-high 17 points. Both also had double-doubles, as Jeppesen grabbed 13 rebounds and Vella tallied 12.
Sacramento State shot 33.3 percent overall on 22-of-66 shooting, including 4-of-20 from 3-point range. The Hornets snagged 34 rebounds, committed 11 turnovers and tallied a season-low six assists. They went 13-of-21 at the free throw line.
Idaho State shot 52.3 percent from the field on 34-of-65 shooting, with 5-of-12 coming from beyond the arc. The Bengals grabbed 47 rebounds and were pressured into 12 turnovers with 19 assists. They went 8-of-13 at the free throw line.
Sacramento State returns home to close out the regular season with two games next weekend. The Hornets will play Montana State at 7 p.m. on March 7 before hosting senior day against Montana at 2 p.m. on March 9.