Sports

Big win for the Thunderwolves playoff hopes

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Senior Erica Hicks steps back and cashes in a 3-point shot to extend the Thunderwolves lead. Photo courtesy of Tyler Shomaker
Senior Erica Hicks steps back and cashes in a 3-point shot to extend the Thunderwolves’ lead. Photo courtesy of Tyler Shomaker

It was a good night for the Colorado State University-Pueblo women‘s basketball team (17-7, 14-6 RMAC) as they beat the Chadron State College Eagles (5-20, 5-16 RMAC), 62-41, on Feb. 23, at the Massari Arena.

The game started off with a bang. The team came out fired up after losing to BHSU the night before. The Thunderwolves were out rebounded throughout the game, but CSC was not able to take advantage of the second chances,

The top player of Saturday’s game was Erica Hicks, who scored 18 points and grabbed five rebounds.

“This win at home was exciting for me, because we don’t know if we’ll get a home game in the playoffs,” Hicks said. “And tonight we were lucky enough to capitalize off of what they gave us.”

“Tonight was an important game and next week is very important, so we are going to practice hard for next week against Metro and Regis,” Hicks said.

The loss from Friday night dropped the team from to the No. 5 team in the RMAC. If the season ended today, the Thunderwolves would not host a RMAC Tournament game at the Massari Arena.

“After last night’s loss, we really needed to win this one,” coach Kip Drown said. “We need this momentum going into next week’s games. We play Metro next week and they beat us here at home the last time we played them, so it’s going to be tough.”

The Thunderwolves had the biggest lead of the game, at 25 points, which came with 12 minutes remaining in the second half. This game was a showing that the Thunderwolves could still come out and play well, although CSU-Pueblo has lost three of its last four games, coming into the day.

Senior Caiti Forrester drives in for a basket on Saturday's game against CSC. Photo courtesy of Tyler Shomaker
Senior Caiti Forrester drives in for a basket on Saturday’s game against CSC. Photo courtesy of Tyler Shomaker

The CSC Eagles seemed like a one woman team, as more than half of their points came from Kattie Ranta, who got in foul trouble within minutes of the second half.

Before the game started, there was a quick ceremony to honor the seniors on the team since this could be their last game at the Massari Arena, if the Thunderwolves are not able to secure a spot in the RMAC top four.

The team ranked just above CSU-Pueblo is Fort Lewis and if CSU-Pueblo could win out next weekend and Fort Lewis lose out, another home game could be in the Thunderwolves future.

Next weekend will be must win games for CSU-Pueblo, against Metro State on March 1, and Regis on March 2. Both games will be away games for CSU-Pueblo.

For more information about the games, visit the CSU-Pueblo athletics website at www.gothunderwolves.com