SDSU Women's Hoops Unable To Get Past Colorado State, 68-55
Feb. 4, 2006
SAN DIEGO - The San Diego State women's basketball team cut a 14-point second half deficit down to just four with five minutes remaining, but was unable to get any closer as the visiting Colorado State Rams pulled out a 68-55 victory Saturday afternoon at Cox Arena. With the loss, the Aztecs fell to 3-16 overall and 0-9 in conference play, while the Rams improved to 8-12 overall and 2-7 in league action.
"We couldn't have played any harder - we gave everything we had right up until the last buzzer," SDSU head coach Beth Burns said. "When we struggle to make shots, the game gets hard. We had to be perfect today and we couldn't give up any put backs. I think even though their turnover count wasn't extremely high, we kept them out of the rhythm of their offense, because they would have been that much tougher."
SDSU senior Michelle Strawberry (Corona, Calif.) scored in double-figures for the 15th time this season, posting a team-best 15 points, including a trio of three-pointers. Classmate Veronica Shaw (Phoenix, Ariz.) added 12 points, while Desiree Johnson (Kahuku, Hawaii) chipped in nine points, nine rebounds and six blocks. The six blocks are tied for fourth-best in Aztec single-game history and the most since the 2000 campaign.
SDSU also received an outstanding effort from point guard Tamika Lipford (Oceanside, Calif.), who recorded five assists and six steals, the most by an Aztec since Shaw tallied eight steals at Sacramento State in January 2003.
The teams were dead even in almost every statistical category except shooting percentage and free throws, where Colorado State owned an advantage in both. The Rams shot 50 percent from the field in the second half and went to the line 15 more times than the Aztecs for the game.
SDSU opened the afternoon with a 4-0 lead, but then trailed by six as CSU scored the next 10 points. The Aztecs jumped back ahead eight minutes later as a Shanna Demus (Palmdale, Calif.) three-pointer and a Johnson lay-up capped a 13-4 SDSU run to put the host school up by three at 17-14. The Rams tied the score at 17 on three-straight free throws and were up by five at the half, 27-22.
Colorado State doubled their halftime lead by the 15:49 mark of the second half and was up by 14 at 52-38 with 8:26 remaining in the game. A Demus jumper, however, kick started a 10-0 San Diego State run to put the Aztecs down by just four at 52-48. A three-point play by Ram Melissa Dennett on her team's next possession increased the SDSU deficit to seven and CSU was 9-for-9 from the line in the final 3:41 to secure the 68-55 victory.
Dennett led all scorers with 23 points on 10-for-18 shooting from the field, while Marilyn Moulton added 11 rebounds in 24 minutes for the Rams.
San Diego State heads on the road for its next two conference outings Wednesday at Air Force (7 p.m. CST) and Saturday afternoon at Utah (3 p.m. CST).