Chill feels Dallas’ Fury

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Apr 012004
 
Authors: Joelle Milholm

The Colorado Chill accomplished almost everything it could have

hoped for in its inaugural season in the National Women’s

Basketball League, but the one thing the team couldn’t do was win

the Pro Cup.

The Dallas Fury melted the Chill’s dreams by narrowly beating

Colorado 73-69.

“We hesitated a little bit when we came out,” said Chill head

coach Jade Strohm in a 1570 AM radio interview. “We had the

opportunities and we didn’t get it done.”

With 27 seconds remaining in the game and the Chill (16-7) down

by three, Ruth Riley fouled out on a controversial moving pick call

that gave the ball to the Fury. Dallas’ Sheryl Swoopes went to the

free-throw line and made one of her two free throws, giving the

Fury an unreachable four-point lead at 73-69.

Riley, who scored 19 points and pulled down a game-high 21

rebounds, dominated the paint.

“I was really impressed with our post play,” Strohm said. “And

we played really good defensively.”

The foul that placed Riley on the bench was the key turning

point in the game. Three of Riley’s six fouls were moving-pick

fouls, which caused a lot of controversy in the stands and on the

floor.

The Chill struggled from behind the arch (going 4-for-16 in the

game), and went through a five-minute scoreless streak in the first

half, but Becky Hammon, who scored 16 points on 6-of-11 shooting,

hit a 3-pointer with one second remaining to give Colorado a 38-37

lead at halftime. Both teams exchanged leads for most of the second

half before Dallas pulled away.

Colorado was plagued by turnovers and foul trouble but finished

the game shooting 50 percent from the field.

“We had too many turnovers. We are a better team than that,”

Strohm said of the team’s biggest problem.

The win was the first Pro Cup Championship victory for the Fury

(15-7).

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