Last Game: Win 74-72 over Fort Hays Tigers
Next Game: Nov. 13 vs. Colorado School of Mines, Moby Arena 2 p.m.
The CSU Women's basketball team claimed victory over Fort Hays last night in the first of their two exhibition games for the 2005 season, defeating the Tigers 74-72 with seconds left on the clock.
Senior forward Melissa Dennett led the Lady Ram's by scoring 18 points and grabbing 14 rebounds throughout the game.
"It was definitely frustrating with the defense all over me, but you've got to stick with it. Moving the ball and making the defense work is what scored points," she said.
The Rams came out strong, taking a 17-7 lead early in the game but tied it up 25-25 with five minutes left to go in the first half. Dennett scored a jumper from the floor with 25 seconds remaining to put the Rams in the lead 36-35 at the end of the first half.
Head coach Jenn Warden played the team in man-to-man defense with a full court press through the majority of the game. This was the first game she has coached the Rams.
"I hope to continue seeing composure on the court. If you don't have confidence you can't play together. No matter what happens, I think we will continue trusting our basic defense," said Warden. This game was especially important for the Rams, as it was their first chance to experiment with the new system proposed by Warden.
"We really grew as a team. I was most impressed with our ability to work with the new system. The girls did everything competitively and they believed in it," she said.
The Rams came out aggressively in the second half, but the Tigers kept up with them. In the last minutes of the game, both teams took turns making plays and scoring points.
Junior guard Sarah Hunter, who scored 17 points, looked to her teammates and the intensity of the crowd to keep them on top.
"We believe in each other and deep down we knew we could pull it off. We all had confidence that we could get it done," Hunter said.
Lindsey "L.T." Thomas added 16 points and grabbed 8 rebounds for the Lady Rams. She was not sure what to expect from the other team, but kept the tempo of the court moving smoothly.
"We had only seen this team play once but we knew they were good," she said. "We can win games when it's tough to win and that's important."
All of the players as well as the coaches agreed that this was a learning experience.