Jan 302011
Authors: David de Besche

It was a tale of two halves for the CSU women’s basketball team on Saturday afternoon.

The first half was a dismal one for the Rams (11-9, 4-3) who scored just 14 points while shooting only 31.8 percent from the field against the Utah Utes (10-11, 3-4). The 14 points were the second lowest output by the Rams in a half so far this season.

“It was not our game. It didn’t even look like us,” freshman Sam Martin said.

CSU managed to get back on track in the second half, outscoring Utah 39-23 and getting a 53-48 conference victory. Instead of changing the game plan at halftime, Coach Kristen Holt expected her kids to respond to the challenge.

“Coach (Kristen Holt) basically had her whole board full of adjustments,” junior Kim Mestdagh said. “But she didn’t even mention them because she said it all comes down to our focus and our will and our effort to win this game.”
The Rams listened to Holt and made their move with 12 minutes remaining.

Sophomore Chantel Kennedy had another solid game for the Rams with six points, six rebounds, and three steals. Kennedy’s energy got things going for CSU, who scoring the first four points of what would end up being an 18-3 CSU run.

“We were relentless in the second half,” Kennedy said.

Though the run was a team effort, Mestdagh figured largely after not scoring in the first half. Mestdagh accounted for seven points during the stretch, ending the game with a game-high 15 points and six rebounds.

“I noticed my shot wasn’t going, so I tried something different and it worked,” Mestdagh said.

The Moby crowd helped fuel the Rams run.

“The crowd was awesome. I think they helped us get our momentum going. We had stops, and they kept screaming, and then we’d score and they’d scream more. It was so fun to play in front of,” said Martin, who ended the game with 13 points and four rebounds.

This victory gives the Rams sole possession of 4th place in the Mountain West Conference. With nine games to go, CSU is excited with where they are but look are looking close out the season strong.

“There’s a lot of basketball to be played. In the past, we haven’t finished strong; we’ve kind of fallen off the face of the earth at the end of the season. So our goal is to finish strong.” Coach Holt said.

Women’s basketball Beat Reporter David de Besche can be reached at sports@collegian.com.

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