Lions lose RMAC opener

By Doug Fitzgerald published December 9, 2004

HAYS, Kan. - You just don't win many games by shooting 30 percent.

The University of Colorado at Colorado Springs shot a woeful 28.3 percent from the field Thursday night, which led to an 81-51 victory for the Fort Hays State Tigers in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference opener for both teams.

For the Mountain Lions, the trip to Gross Memorial Coliseum was (forgive the pun) nearly pointless.

Fort Hays State (6-2) came into the game allowing opponents to convert on only 38.3 percent of their shots. The athletic Tigers harried CU-Colorado Springs shooters into low-percentage shots at times. More often, though, the Mountain Lions worked the ball around for a good look at the hoop but missed the shot. Only one Mountain Lion, center Chris McGowne who went 3-for-6, shot better than 34 percent.

From 3-point range, CU-Colorado Springs went 3-for-20.

"We missed a lot of open 3s," said CU-Colorado Springs coach Lance Hammond. "We ran our offense very well at times and got open shots, but we just didn't knock them down."

Perimeter defense, which has been a sore spot for CU-Colorado Springs all season, was again problematic. Fort Hays State made seven of its eight 3-point attempts in the first half and shot 47.6 percent for the game. For the season, opponents are shooting robust 46 percent on 3-pointers for the season against the Mountain Lions.

"I'm very disappointed," said Hammond about his team's defense. "We "tag" shooters, which means you never get more than an arm's length away. Too often, we leave the shooters to help inside and run at non-shooters. It's about playing team defense."

Jim Pecic led CU-Colorado Springs with 14 points and 12 rebounds. Torrey Phillips added seven points, nine rebounds and five assists.

DaMarcus Foster led Fort Hays State (6-2) with 18 points.

Despite falling to 0-6, CU-Colorado Springs players are optimistic that better times are coming.

"We're getting there," said Pecic. "It's hard to go 0-6, but our preparation beginning to pay dividends. We're beginning to trust the system more. We just have to keep getting better."

UCCS Players/Staff Featured

Jim PecicJim Pecic32FJr.
Jim PecicJim Pecic20FJr.
Jim PecicJim Pecic20FSr.
Chris McGowneChris McGowne54CJr.
Chris McGowneChris McGowne54CJr.
Torrey PhillipsTorrey Phillips5GSo.
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