The Colorado Chill hit a bump on the road Tuesday night, losing for the first time this season to the Birmingham Power 78-74.
In spite of a valiant comeback, the women came up just short of keeping a flawless record, but they look to rebound over the weekend.
Down by five at halftime, the Chill came out shooting 0-for-6 to open the second half. Birmingham took advantage of the opportunity and managed to stretch the lead to 17 points early in the second half.
The Chill fought their way back, rallying late. The team finished on 16-of-21 shooting to finish the game, but it still wasn't enough to overtake Birmingham on its home court. Former CSU star guard Becky Hammon topped all scorers with 21 points on 8-of-16 shooting from the floor. Birmingham moved its record to 3-0.
Currently 4-1 on the season, the Chill have a tough schedule ahead of it but should hold its own with a seasoned team built from many former local collegiate stars. Headlining that group is Hammon, the star who had her jersey retired over the weekend by CSU. She leads the NWBL in points, assists and steals per game, and provides a consistent threat for the Chill to turn to.
The team is far from a one-star show, receiving great play from a number of players. Center Ruth Reilly leads the league in rebounds and averages five blocks per game, providing a dominant presence for the Chill in the middle. Another former Ram, Katie Cronin, plays a key role in the Chill's offense with her 16 points per game. The team has great depth from top to bottom, and can rely on any number of players to step up on any night.
The Chill begins a three-game home stand tonight at 7 against the Dallas Fury (2-3) at the Budweiser Events Center. The two teams met in last season's NWBL World Cup, in which Dallas prevailed. Now the Chill will work on a new winning streak and seek a measure of payback against last year's champions.