Welsh's Double-Double Leads Mountain Lions to Victory
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Alex Welsh recorded his first double-double of the season and the fourth of his career with 21 points and 10 rebounds to lead the University of Colorado Colorado Springs (7-3 / 4-2 RMAC) to an 82-66 win against Western New Mexico (1-8 / 1-5 RMAC) tonight in the Gallogly Events Center. The win marks the first three-game conference winning streak in two years for the Mountain Lions.
The 7-3 start matches the start of the 2006-07 season, and the 4-2 conference record puts UCCS in a tie for fourth in the standings going into the nationwide Division II holiday break period. Coupled with the women's 2-0 sweep, it marks the first time since the weekend of Dec. 15-16, 2001, when the Mountain Lions have gone a combined 4-0 in a conference weekend.
The Mustangs took an early 6-0 lead, and didn't trail to the Mountain Lions until Tim Billingsley scored on a layup with 7:10 left to play in the first half. It was Billingsley's second straight field goal and came during an 11-2 run for the Mountain Lions. UCCS limited Western New Mexico to one field goal attempt in the final 2:30 of the half, and maintained a 28-26 lead against the Mustangs at the break.
The Mountain Lions scored the first five points of the second half for a seven-point advantage, and expanded it out to an 11-point lead just more than four minutes into the period. Western New Mexico brought it as close to six points in the remainder of the half, off a three-pointer with 6:15 to play, but UCCS answered with a seven-point run en route to the 16-point win.
Welsh scored 21 points for the second straight Saturday night, and finished with his first double-double of the season after he twice recorded nine rebounds this season. He shot better than 60 percent from the field for the third straight game and is 63 percent from the three-point line in the last three games.
Billingsley finished with 14 points for his sixth double-digit game of the season, and Derrick White added 13 points and a team-high five assists.
UCCS shot better than 50 percent from the field for the third straight game and the fifth time this season, and maintained a double-digit rebounding advantage for the seventh time. The 54 second-half points was the largest second half output since a 56-point performance on Dec. 10, 2011, against Colorado Christian.
Up Next: The Mountain Lions will be off next week as part of the holiday break, and will be back in action on Jan. 4, at Colorado State-Pueblo. The ThunderWolves (6-4 / 4-2 RMAC) lost 82-71 earlier tonight to New Mexico Highlands.
UCCS Players/Staff Featured
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