Kirchoff Reaches 1,000, Patterson Sinks Free Throws as UCCS Claims Win

By Jared Verner published December 21, 2013

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Sam Patterson made two free throws with 0.1 seconds left in regulation to send the game into overtime, and then made another pair with 0.3 seconds left in overtime to seal the win as the University of Colorado Colorado Springs (4-6 / 3-3 RMAC) won 79-75 against Western New Mexico (4-7 / 1-5 RMAC) tonight in the Gallogly Events Center.

Junior guard Abby Kirchoff led both teams with a career-high 35 points, tied for the second-highest total in a single game in UCCS history. She scored a program-record 16 points off of free throws, and the 35 total points was exactly what she needed to reach the 1,000-point mark to become the eighth Mountain Lion in program history with 1,000 points.

UCCS was down by one point at halftime, 37-36, but gave up an 11-2 run midway through the second half to go down by 11 points, 50-39. The Mustangs took as large as of 12-point lead at 54-42 with 7:36 to play, before the Mountain Lions put together a 13-point run over a three-and-a-half period to retake the lead at 55-54 with 3:36 to play.

Kirchoff's layup with just more than two minutes to play put UCCS ahead at 61-59. The Mustangs scored four points in a 40-second span to retake a two-point lead at 63-61 with 1:04 left to play. Western New Mexico fouled Kirchoff with 37 seconds to play, which allowed her to tie the game at 63-63. The Mustangs answered with a retook the lead with 15 seconds to go at 65-63, which allowed the Mountain Lions one final possession for the end of regulation.

Jeri Pikul took a three-pointer from the left corner with three seconds left, but a quick rebound from Sam Patterson allowed her a chance to get to the line for the first time in the night with 0.1 seconds left. She made her first to bring the game within one point at 65-64, and she made the second game-tying free throw after the Mustangs attempted to ice her with their final timeout.

UCCS controlled the jump in overtime, but Western New Mexico took the early lead on a layup 39 seconds into the period. Kirchoff scored the next four points for the Mountain Lions at the free throw line to put UCCS ahead by three points, 70-67, and scored her 999th point on the second of two free throws with 1:20 left to play to make it a four-point game at 74-70. The Mustangs closed the game to one point at 76-75 with 12 seconds remaining, and Kirchoff scored her 1000th career point on the second of two free throws with 11 seconds on the clock to put UCCS ahead by two at 77-75.

Western New Mexico moved quickly down the court and missed a layup and a follow-up jumper, and fouled Patterson on the rebound to send her back to the free throw line with 0.3 seconds to play. She made both to seal the game at 79-75 for the Mountain Lions' third straight home win of the season.

Kirchoff's 35 points were the most against a conference opponent in program history, and the most overall since Jennie Sauter scored 35 against Pittsburg State on Nov. 18, 2005. She broke the single-game free throw record previously set by Sauter against Northern Colorado on Feb. 14, 2005.

Pikul scored a career-high 22 points and shot nine-of-15 from the field. Patterson added eight points, with four of her points at the free throw line.

The win was the second overtime victory against the Mustangs in the last three meetings. It was marked the first back-to-back wins for the Mountain Lions this season and it evened their conference record going into the mandatory Division II holiday break.

Up Next: UCCS will face travel partner Colorado State-Pueblo, on Jan. 4, in Pueblo. The ThunderWolves (9-3 / 6-0 RMAC) are receiving votes in the latest WBCA Division II national poll and won 65-56 earlier tonight against New Mexico Highlands.

UCCS Players/Staff Featured

Abby KirchoffAbby Kirchoff20GJr.
Sam PattersonSam Patterson32F/CJr.
Jeri PikulJeri Pikul24GSr.
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