CSU womenâ€™s basketball dropped under .500 for the first time this season following a 61-73 loss to TCU on Saturday.
The Rams trailed by as many as 24 in the second half, but managed to claw within 12 with under a minute remaining. CSU outscored the Horned Frogs 35-27 in the second half, but had dug too deep of a hole to climb out of.
â€œIn the second half we played more as one team,â€ sophomore forward Chatilla van Grinsven said.
Van Grinsven led the team with 17 points, 15 of which came during the second half, to go along with six rebounds and four blocks, one shy of her career-high.
Meghan Heimstra bounced back from a 10 turnover debacle at New Mexico to score 14 points and grab nine rebounds, but fouled out with two minutes remaining.
The Ramsâ€™ leading scorer, Kim Mestdagh, only put up nine points, well below her season average of 16.8 per game. Foul trouble sidelined her for most of the first half.
â€œIf Kim doesnâ€™t score, we donâ€™t win too many games,â€ head coach Kristen Holt said.
TCU entered halftime up by 20 and dominated most of the first half. They opened the game with a 12-2 run and never had their advantage fall under double digits after 14:08 remaining in the first half.
The Frogs shot 44.8 percent for the game, including 42.1 percent from beyond the three-point line.
â€œThey shoot the ball very well and got a lot of open looks,â€ Mestdagh said.
TCU outscored the Rams 24 to 18 in the paint, 12 to four in the first half.
â€œTheyâ€™re a very efficient team offensively,â€ Holt said. â€œThey picked us apart.â€
Four of TCUâ€™s starters put up double figure point totals, with freshman Starr Crawford leading the way with 15.
Junior guard Zoi Simmons only played one minute after suffering a knee injury Wednesday at New Mexico.
â€œShe couldâ€™ve played more, that was a decision by me,â€ Holt said. â€œWe wanted her to feel confident on that knee.â€
Simmons ranks first on the team in free throw percentage and assists per game.
The loss drops the Rams to eighth in the conference standings with the regular season winding down. CSU has two games remaining this season before the MWC Championships, at home against San Diego State on Wednesday and at Utah on Saturday. The Rams have lost to both the Utes and Aztecs in their earlier match ups this year.
â€œItâ€™s kinda fun to play against those good teams,â€ Heimstra said. â€œIt wouldnâ€™t be any fun if all we did was play teams we could beat up on all the time.â€
Womenâ€™s Basketball Beat Reporter Kyle Grabowski can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.