Make it five

The U women’s basketball team seems to be on a roll right now.

It has won four straight, Kim Smith was named the Mountain West Conference Player of the Week, and it’s had a week off to prepare for the final ten games of the regular season.

It’s a good thing because the Utes will need to stay on a roll if they expect things to continue going well when they face the TCU Horned Frogs this Saturday in Fort Worth.

TCU has won eight of its last ten, including a 76-67 home victory over No. 17 New Mexico two weeks ago.

On Wednesday night, the Frogs let a 35-28 halftime lead slip away to BYU and fell short to the Cougars 67-64.

Lorie Butler-Rayford scored 16 points in the loss and Natasha Lacy pulled down 12 rebounds for TCU.

On the season, Lacy leads the Horned Frogs, averaging 13.5 points, 7.6 rebounds and 3.94 assists a game.

In last year’s contest, TCU held a 38-37 halftime lead at the Huntsman Center before the Utes nailed seven of their 15 three-point shots in the second half to knock off the Horned Frogs, 85-72.

The Utes continued their recent thrashing of the MWC last Saturday, beating UNLV in Las Vegas 59-51.

Smith scored 21 points while grabbing six rebounds, and Shona Thorburn added 16 points and six rebounds as the Utes won a back-and-forth battle with the Rebels.

“They didn’t fold when it wasn’t easy,” head coach Elaine Elliott said. “When they got close, we didn’t give up.”

It’s that kind of tenacity that has helped the Utes win their last four games by an average of 28 points.

“I’m happy about the progress of our team,” Elliott said.

The teams are set to meet at the Daniel-Meyer Coliseum at 1 p.m.

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