Basketball is a game of making baskets, and the CSU women’s basketball team only made 30 percent of its shots Wednesday night, en route to a 69-53 defeat to the University of Denver.
It was a battle of two teams badly needing a win, and the Pioneers made more plays than the Rams down the stretch.
DU guards Britteni Rice and Jenny Vaughan combined for 34 points and made open shots the Rams could not get down.
“The difference in the game was we had those kids step up making shots,” said DU head coach Erik Johnson.
Senior guard and team captain Kandy Beemer led the Rams with 18 points but was the only Ram to break double figures.
Ram head coach Kristen Holt said she is looking for players other than Beemer to step up and be consistent.
“We just need that consistency. We just don’t have that from any player. I don’t know what to count on,” Holt said. “We know Kandy’s going to shoot her shots, and that’s a consistent thing, but other than that, it’s hit or miss.”
It was a lot of hit and miss Wednesday night as the Rams shot 30.4 percent from the floor, including 20 percent in the first half. The team had plenty of open looks but could not connect.
“I thought that we were getting some shots early on that we should have hit; they were easy shots,” Holt said. “We just went in this mode where we were pushing it, which we like to do, but we’re not pushing it with the idea that we want to shoot just any open shot.”
Beemer said the team was not valuing the possession and the ball.
“It just gets really frustrating,” Beemer said. “We don’t value our possessions enough; we just come down and throw it up and expect to come back. We need to realize that we needed to get a good shot, because we can. We would have worked it around instead of taking a shot guarded by three people.”
Senior forward Britney Minor agreed and said the team was not seeing the entire court.
“I don’t think we were seeing the floor well tonight either because there were a lot of open skip passes and corner shots that we could’ve gotten but we didn’t get it to the player that was open,” said Minor, who scored seven points. “We get kind of frantic and take rushed shots and don’t really think about what we’re doing before we do it.”
The loss is the third in a row for the Rams whose record now stands at 1-5, while DU moves to 2-3. In previous losses, Holt said the team took steps forward; not so last night, she said.
“We knew that this would be a work in progress; unfortunately, I didn’t feel we took a step forward tonight,” Holt said. “I feel like we’ve been taking baby steps all along even though we’ve lost games and I just thought tonight was not a good night for us.”
Sports writer Stephen Meyers can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.