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Air Force advances to MWC tournament semifinals for first time in school history

Falcons draw regular season champion UNLV in semifinal round
Air Force advances to MWC tournament semifinals for first time in school history
Posted at 11:07 PM, Mar 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-08 07:30:11-05

LAS VEGAS — The Air Force women's basketball doesn't want to see their historic season end.

On Monday, the Falcons opened the Air Force Reserve Mountain West Conference Tournament with a 75-60 win over Nevada to advance to the semifinals for the first time in school history.

Seniors Riley Snyder and Cierra Winters shared a team-high 17 points as the pair combined to shoot 13-26 from the field. Winters, having collected a career-high 10 rebounds, also managed her first-career double-double on Monday.

"Honestly, it's on to the next game," Winters said when asked of the significance of recording her first-career double-double. "I didn't even know I had a double double. It's not about that. I was just doing my job. So we just want to win the next one and the one after that."

"I thought that the hot start was extremely important because Nevada is an outstanding defensive team and they're also an outstanding rebounding team," said head coach Chris Gobrecht. "We had to hit shots."

The three-pointer was a crucial tool for the Falcons, as the team connected on 9 of 16 attempts. Air Force's 56.3% success rate from deep becomes a new season-best.

Kamri Heath and Nikki McDonald also finished in double-figures with both women scoring 11 points. McDonald finished a perfect 4-4 from the field, though the chunk of her scoring came from beyond the arc, as the junior buried all three of her three-point attempts.

The Falcons will face top seed UNLV in the semifinal round, a team they lost too in both regular season games.

"I think both times we played UNLV we definitely did not play up to our potential," said Riley Snyder. "We got both of the matchups that we wanted. I don't think UNLV has seen Air Force basketball, so that's really encouraging for us. Yeah, I'm really excited. I wanted another chance at them.

Air Force and UNLV are scheduled to tip-off at 6 pm MT on Tuesday, March 8.

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