New Mexico proves too much for UCCS
ALBUQUERQUE â€" The University of Colorado at Colorado Springs womenâ€TMs basketball team had its second foray into the realm of big-time Division I basketball for the 2006-07 season Sunday with a 68-34 loss to the New Mexico Lobos in the Pit.
The Mountain Lions will wrap up their exhibition season Saturday with yet another D-I tilt at the University of Denver.
Tonya Tripp led the Mountain Lions with seven points, while Emily Jenkins and Nancy Hoist added six each.
Candace Thornton had six rebounds as the Mountain Lions held their own on the boards. UCCS had 4 offensive boards to New Mexicoâ€TMs nine and trailed just 39-36 overall.
For UCCS, playing Division I teams is a quest for progress. In that event, it was a success for the Mountain Lions.
â€œFor us to get 14 offensive rebounds against a Division I program is something special and will serve us well when we get into RMAC competition,â€ said UCCS coach Jessika Stratton. â€œKeeping the rebound margin within three is the kind of thing that will win games for us down the line.â€
The Mountain Lions struggled with the ferocity of Division I defense. Every shot UCCS took in the first half, except Janean Jubicâ€TMs all-net 3-pointer, was aggressively contested, resulting in a humbling 15.4 shooting percentage.
And it wasnâ€TMt just the shots that were contested. Whenever a UCCS player got the ball in the post, Lobo hands flew in like the rotating brushes at an automatic car wash. The Mountain Lions committed 15 first-half turnovers and 26 overall.
â€œDivision I defense is much more physical,â€ said Stratton. â€œNew Mexico did a great job of bodying up without fouling.â€
But the Mountain Lionsâ€TM defense created more than a few problems for New Mexico as well. The high-octane Lobos managed only 18 points over the gameâ€TMs first 16 minutes before scoring on four of the final possessions of the half.
â€œHolding them to 26 first-half points and 68 total makes the coach proud,â€ said Stratton.
Unfortunately, that trend continued into the second half. New Mexico, behind 4-for-7 shooting from 3-point range, opened with a 22-9 run over the first eight minutes. The combination of UCCS trapping aggressively and New Mexico turning on the jets in the running game led to the Lobos shooting 66.7 percent in the final 20 minutes.
Katie Montgomery led the Lobos with 18 points, while Dionne Marsh added 14 and Julie Briody had 12. Although she scored no points, Timi E-Nunu was a huge pest for the Lobos, getting four steals and forcing UCCS into numerous inconsequential passes.
UCCS Players/Staff Featured
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