RENO - Erica Taylor is starting to round into shape, and that's bad news for the rest of the WAC teams and anybody else that Louisiana Tech might see in the NCAA Tournament.
Taylor scored 21 points, had three steals, dished out five assists and pulled down six rebounds to spark the Lady Techsters to an 81-68 win over Boise State in the WAC quarterfinals at Lawlor Events Center.
Not bad for somebody who got pregnant in the off-season, and missed the first half of the season. Taylor, who is married to undefeated middleweight Jermain Taylor, delivered her baby on Dec. 14, and was back on the court a little more than a month later.
Taylor said that she isn't quite what she was last year when she finished the season by averaging 23.3 in the post-season, which earnd her Preseason Player of the Year honors. She is, by her own admission coming around.
Tech struggled without her early on, going 4-4 in their first eight games. They won six straight after that, and were 10-4 when she played her first game of the season Jan. 22. She scored five points in a 69-62 win over SMU.
Since her return, Louisiana Tech went 9-4, including Wednesday's win over Boise State.
"I think she looks really good," Boise State coach Jen Warden said after the game. "I think she looks as close as she can be to the end of last season.
"You can tell the difference between the time we played them last and this time. She looked a step slower then. Today, she looked like the player we know and love."
LAST GAME AT BSU?
Warden, Boise State women's coach, may have coached her last game with the Broncos.
Warden, a former University of Colorado assistant, is rumored to be one of the candidates to replace Ceal Barry, who retired after the Buffs were eliminated in the Big 12 Tournament earlier this week.
Warden was Barry's top recruiter at CU, and reports are that the Buffs' recruiting had dropped off since she left.
The BSU coach said she was committed to the program. We'll see. Many a coach has said the same thing, only to change jobs a week later.
CHARTER AIRS GAMES
All four of today's men's quarterfinals can be seen on Charter Cable Channel 15, starting at noon with the Hawai'i-UTEP game.