Seniors lead Mountain Lions to victory over Colorado Christian
LAKEWOOD - Brent Jones' 23 points and Luke Hristou's career-high 13 rebounds marked the way as the University of Colorado at Colorado's seniors led the Mountain Lions to a 71-69 victory over Colorado Christian Friday evening at the Cougar Event Center.
Jones was the game's top scorer on 9-of-11 shooting and also had a team-best four assists. Hristou, also a senior, beat his previous best rebounding total by six and scored four of his five points in the game's final 1:19. The Mountain Lions' other two seniors also acquitted themselves well as Rob Howe scored 17 and Ben Feilmeier added 12 points and three assists.
UCCS (9-16, 7-14 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference) overcame 20 turnovers by shooting 54.8 percent from the field.
Rye Olson led Colorado Christian (7-18, 6-15 RMAC) with 15 points on five 3-pointers. The Cougars lived from long range, making 13-of-33 from beyond the arc. Jeff Jefferson had a game-high six assists.
At the end, it looked like neither team wanted to win the game. UCCS led by one and had the ball with 17 seconds remaining and needed only to retain possession to force Colorado Christian to foul. Instead, the Mountain Lions turned the ball over and compounded the mistake by committing a foul of its own.
That gave the Cougars two free throws and a chance to take the lead with six seconds remaining. The opportunity was wasted when B.J. Wortham missed both attempts and Hristou grabbed the rebound and was fouled.
Hristou missed the second of his two free throws, giving the Cougars a shot with UCCS leading 71-69 and five seconds left. Instead of getting a shot off, Hristou stole the ball and the clock expired.
UCCS scored the game's first seven points and extended the advantage to 16-4 with just over four minutes expired. CCU responded with back-to-back 3-pointers and finished the 9-1 run with a third trey. UCCS never trailed in the half but did have its lead cut to 22-21. The Mountain Lions took a 44-39 lead into the intermission.
With the Mountain Lions leading 54-47, the Cougars again hit 3-pointers on three straight possessions to tie the game at 56. Colorado Christian took a 67-63 lead and held that until the final two minutes. After an Alan Paul layup cut it to 67-65, Hristou converted a CCU turnover into a free throw that brought the Mountain Lions to within a point.
Damar Hill stole the ball and was fouled with 43 seconds left. His two free throws gave UCCS the lead back at 68-67. After a missed shot by the Cougars, Hristou was sent to the line on a rebounding foul. His two free throws gave UCCS a 70-67 lead with 24 seconds on the clock, setting up the frenetic final seconds.
UCCS Players/Staff Featured
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