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Utah women capitalize on Air Force's misfires

The U.S. Air Force will undoubtedly be able to go into Iraq and drop bombs until the entire country is nothing but shrapnel. But when it comes to hoops, the only bombs you'll see from the Air Force are duds.

The No. 20-ranked Ute women marched into Colorado Springs Saturday afternoon focused on winning their second straight WAC Mountain Division title. They left mission accomplished, leaving Clune Arena looking like an artillery range. After all, all the Utes did all day was bomb away.Julie Krommenhoek hit a school record nine 3-pointers and scored 33 points as the Utes blew up Air Force 100-39. And it could've been worse.

Krommenhoek only played 22 minutes, as Utah coach Elaine Elliott showed a little mercy on the poor Cadets but did enough to make Air Force happy it isn't going to the WAC Tournament. That way, the Falcons never have to see her again. Air Force is now 0-14 in conference play.

"(Julie) could've have gotten a school record for points if I played her more," said Elliott. "But I'm friends with (Air Force coach Marti Gasser) and didn't want to make things worse."

Is a 61-point win really a humanitarian gesture though?

"I put the bench in, but I can't tell the players not to score," said Elliott. "I expect the team to play its hardest all game - no matter what the score is."

That's exactly what Elliott told her team at the break, after it took a 54-22 lead at halftime. And once Utah led 67-27 with 15:08 left, it was up to the reserves to finish the game. Who knew they'd end it on a 33-12 run?

No Falcon scored in double figures, and Lindsay Sodja added 18 for the Utes.

The win gives Utah its fourth WAC title of some form (it won the WAC Tournament in 1995). It will get the No. 1 seed at the WAC Tournament since it beat the team it's tied with, Colorado State, twice during the regular season.