The Adams State College Grizzlies women’s basketball team added to their impressive win streak on Friday night, defeating the Regis University Rangers on their home court 57-48.
Both teams struggled in the first half in a variety of facets of the game. The Grizzlies committed 14 turnovers in the first half, and shot just under 35 percent from the field, including going 0-for-9 from behind the three point line.
However, the Grizzlies played terrific defense, allowing the Rangers to only connect on five of their 27 attempted field goals in the first half for an 18.5 percent success rate. Overall, the Rangers only fared marginally better in the second half, and finished the game shooting a little better than 26 percent from the field.
Both teams played a sloppy first half, with a score of 21-18 at the break, and saw junior guard Vera Jo Bustos stand out on the Grizzlies’ portion of the box score, as she hauled down nine rebounds in the half.
The Rangers’ junior guard Jacque Machesney was the only player on either team to score double figures in the first half, contributing 10 of the Rangers’ 18 points in the half.
Following halftime, the Grizzly offense began to click, and connected on six of their first seven possessions of the second half, opening up the lead to 33-18 at the 15:32 mark. In all, the Grizzlies scored 19 consecutive points over the first eight minutes of the half to bring the lead to 40-18 before Machesney hit a three pointer that finally got the Rangers on the scoreboard in the second half.
Machesney’s three pointer opened up a strong scoring run for the Rangers that answered what the Grizzlies had just done. The Rangers exploded for an 18-3 streak and whittled down the lead the Grizzlies opened the second half with to seven points with just under five minutes remaining in the game.
Bustos and junior forward Ruchelle McCracken answered back, hitting back to back baskets that extended the lead back to 11 points. The Rangers’ effort proved to be too little, too late, and even though the Grizzly lead was knocked back down to six points with 1:19 remaining, the Grizzlies hit eight of ten free throws down the stretch to seal the victory.
Bustos finished the game with a double-double of 16 points and tied her career-high with 12 rebounds. Senior guard Misti Solomon and junior forward Kendra Coveal added 13 points and 10 points, respectively.
Machesney only scored four points in the second half to finish with 14 points, and freshman forward Tae’lor Purdy added 10 points as the only other Ranger in double digits in the scoring column.
The Rangers dropped to 3-2 with the loss, and are now 0-1 in conference play.
The Grizzlies improved to 6-1 on the season with the victory, and won their Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference season opener for the second time in the last three years. The Grizzlies had previously never won more than five straight games in their NCAA Division II era history.
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