Kirchoff Scores 28 as UCCS Falls to Highlands
LAS VEGAS, N.M. - The University of Colorado Colorado Springs led in the entire first half, but couldn't overcome an 8-0 start from New Mexico Highlands in the second half as the Mountain Lions (7-12 / 6-9 RMAC) fell 80-70 to the Cowgirls (9-10 / 5-10 RMAC) tonight at the Joe A. Wilson Complex.
Abby Kirchoff scored a game-high 28 points to move into seventh in UCCS season scoring records. She has 430 points this season and is fifth in career records with 1,184 points.
The Mountain Lions led by as many as eight points on four different occasions in the first half, the last time with 2:34 left to play on a three-pointer from Jessika Kienitz. UCCS shot 48 percent from the field in the first 20 minutes and led Highlands 34-31 at the break.
The Cowgirls scored the first eight points of the second half and took a 39-34 lead with 17:49 to play. UCCS retook the lead three minutes later with a layup from Sam Patterson, as part of a 10-point performance for her during the night. The teams exchanged the lead and stayed within a possession of each other until Highlands put together an 11-4 run midway through the half and maintained the lead to the finish.
Kirchoff's 28 points were the most since her career-high 35 against Western New Mexico on Dec. 21, and it was her seventh 25-point performance of the season. She also moved into second in UCCS junior season records tonight and needs 57 points to tie the record set by Suzanne Ekeler in the 1993-94 season.
Patterson finished with a season-high with her 10 points and led the Mountain Lions with seven rebounds. Shanah Leaf brought down six rebounds, her second-best performance of the season behind her eight rebounds against the Cowgirls earlier this season on Dec. 20.
Up Next: UCCS will return to Colorado Springs next Saturday to face Colorado State-Pueblo in the Second Annual Downtown Classic. The Mountain Lions and ThunderWolves will tip-off at 5:30 p.m., on the new court at the historic Colorado Springs City Auditorium at 221 East Kiowa.
UCCS Players/Staff Featured
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