Metro turns turnovers into points against Mountain Lions

By Matt Sandstead published January 27, 2007

COLORADO SPRINGS â€" A pesky press defense and 20 Mountain Lion turnovers gave the visiting Metro State Roadrunners a 74-60 win in the Lionsâ€TM Den Saturday night, despite a season-high 25 points, 12 rebounds and four blocked shots by Tonya Tripp.

The Mountain Lions (8-11, 6-5 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference) struggled with the No. 18 Metro State Roadrunnersâ€TM full-court press all evening and was unable to get into any kind of offensive flow since it often took half the shot clock to advance the ball into the offensive end.

“Coach [Jessika Stratton] wanted us to take our time in the back court and pass the ball up,” said Tripp. “We were hoping that would open things up on the offensive end but we took too much time in the back court and it didnâ€TMt open us for us.”

A pair of free throws gave the Mountain Lions their final lead of the game, 30-29 with 41 seconds remaining in the first half. Paige Powers answered with a half-court 3-pointer at the buzzer to return the lead to Metro State and send the Roadrunners to the locker room on a high note.

The momentum carried over as Metro State opened the second half with an 8-1 run.

Another reason for the Mountain Lionsâ€TM struggles with the Roadrunnersâ€TM press was the absence of Stacy LaBuhn. LaBuhn, who nearly averaged one assist per turnover in the first 12 games of the season, blew out her knee on Jan. 10 and was lost for the season. Without LaBuhn in the lineup the Mountain Lions were without a veteran guard bringing the ball up court.

“We have a couple of freshmen that have to handle the ball now, and theyâ€TMre actually doing a really good job,” said Tripp. “[LaBuhn] might have been able to dribble her way out of the press a little easier tonight and I really miss playing with her.”

The Roadrunners capitalized on the turnovers they caused by translating the Mountain Lionsâ€TM turnovers into 21 points. Despite the Roadrunnerâ€TMs successful press, a Dolly Fiedelman 3-pointer cut the UCCS deficit to just 64-58 with 2:20 remaining. The Mountain Lions had two defensive stops afterward, but each time turned the ball over to nullify the opportunity.

Danielle Ellerington led the Roadrunners (15-4, 8-3 RMAC) with 16 points, while Cassondra Bratton added 15 points. Rianna Harris had nine points and 12 rebounds.

Dolly Fiedelman added 13 points for the Mountain Lions and Emily Jenkins had seven points, eight rebounds and four assists.

Accurate free throw shooting by Metro State down the stretch accounted for the final margin in what was a much closer game than the score indicated.

UCCS Players/Staff Featured

Dolly FiedelmanDolly Fiedelman3GFr
Dolly FiedelmanDolly Fiedelman3GSo.
Dolly FiedelmanDolly Fiedelman3GJr
Dolly FiedelmanDolly Fiedelman3GSr.
Tonya TrippTonya Tripp43C
Tonya TrippTonya Tripp43CSr.
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