A 10-0 run to start the game for the Colorado State womenâ€™s basketball team set the tone for a dominating 77-39 win over the Air Force Academy Saturday.
The win marks the teamâ€™s third win on the road this season and also the third time the Rams (10-13, 6-2 MW) have held their opponent under 25 percent from the field. The Falcons (5-18, 0-8 MW) have been victim of poor shooting against CSU, only hitting 18.6 percent at Moby Arena on Jan. 11.
â€œItâ€™s great to have a really good win like this on the road,â€ CSU coach Kristin Holt said of her teamâ€™s impressive victory.
The Ramsâ€™ defense was relentless all day, not letting any Air Force player score more than six points.
â€œIt was a big key in our win. We didnâ€™t let (Air Force) have many good shots all day; we played together,â€ sophomore Sam Martin said of the Ramsâ€™ defensive performance.
The win also matches the largest winning margin of the year for the Rams, tying the victory of 38 points over Maryville.
Along with the 10-0 run to start the game, CSU increased its lead to 29 after an 18-2 run to close out the first half. The second half was much of the same as the Rams held a 50-point lead at one point in the second half.
Freshman LaDeyah Forte kept her consistent ways, dishing out nine assists to just one turnover. Coming into the game, Forte was second in the conference in assists and assists-to-turnover-ratio.
Leading the Rams offensively was Martin, who had a game-high 20 points and was a perfect 7-of-7 from the charity stripe. Senior Kim Mestdagh added another 18 points, along with a career-high eight assists.
Though CSU had an unusually high amount of turnovers (18), Holt was happy with the way the team played, having all five freshman on the court at the same time at one point.
â€œWe had too many turnovers, but when you consider the substitutions, I think overall we played a good game,â€ Holt said.
Starting the second half of Mountain West play with a dominating win like this gives the Rams the confidence they need to stay at the top of the league heading into the final stretch of the season.
â€œWe got a lot better this game, and we showed what we can do in this league when we play like we know how,â€ Martin said.
The Rams and the entire MW will have a week off before being back in action Feb. 11 as TCU comes to town. The game will be a â€œPink Outâ€ at Moby Arena and tip-off is set for 4:30 p.m.
Womenâ€™s Basketball Beat Reporter David de Besche can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Final: CSU: 77 Air Force: 39
Top scorer: Sam Martin, 20 points
Up next: Saturday vs. TCU 4:30 p.m. at Moby Arena