The Rams’ season ends in 1st round of MW tournament

Bailey Bassett

For Colorado State basketball, March means it is Mountain West basketball tournament time in Las Vegas. While the women’s team fought valiantly, they were unable to climb out of the hole that they dug themselves into in the first half.

The Rams lost their opening-round matchup with Air Force with a final score of 60-48. CSU was the underdog as the 10 seed playing against the seven seed. A rough first half is what prevented the ideal outcome in this one. At halftime, CSU was down by over double, trailing 15-31. The rebounding advantage also went to Air Force by a margin of nearly double. CSU had 14 first-half rebounds compared to the 28 by the Falcons.

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Additionally, CSU only had one first-half assist. The midrange jumper by Jamie Bonnarens came off a feed by Lore Devos but didn’t occur until there were only 24 seconds left in the half.

The bad play was evident, but bad luck also befell CSU. Air Force is not a good 3-point shooting team, as their 27% mark from deep for the season indicates. The Falcons made 5-18 of their threes, which is consistent with that average, but they made 4-5 from deep in the first quarter. Those threes put CSU in a disadvantageous position early.

“The four 3-pointers in the first quarter really set the tone positively for them and not so positively for us,” coach Ryun Williams said. “We just could never really get anything going, and for whatever reason, it was one of those nights, and obviously we needed to play better.”

The Rams watch their teammates on on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

CSU vastly improved in the second half. The seniors, obviously motivated, took over as best they could. Makenzie Ellis had a game-high 19 points, including an 8-0 run herself that gave CSU a slight glimmer of hope. This run was followed by a Bonnarens 3-pointer, but that spark was eventually snuffed by a CSU scoring drought.

Andrea Brady’s production was second-half dominant as well. She finished with eight points, six of which came at crucial points in the second half.

The girls, specifically the seniors, never gave up. In the first quarter, the Rams stayed aggressive in driving the ball to the rack.

The rim appeared to have a lid on it, as the ball just wouldn’t drop for CSU. Their touch shots and layups continuously rimmed out in unfortunate ways, but the aggression paid off in the second quarter. Their persistence in shooting in the paint created opportunities at the free-throw line and slowed down Air Force a little bit.

While CSU heads home, Air Force will move on and play Boise State.

“This was my favorite year to play,” Ellis said. “I only got one year to play here, but I had a great time, and that’s what I’m going to remember. And (I) know that I actually had fun playing basketball and got to know some really cool people.”

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The Rams ended the season with an overall record of 12-18 and 6-12 in conference play. 

 

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  • Colorado State University basketball player Megan Jacobs during a time out on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • A referee holds the ball on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • Lore Devos collides with Falcon Briana Autrey-Thompson on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • CAM the Ram on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • Colorado State University basketball player Tori Williams dribbles the ball on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • A Colorado State University cheerleader on March 1. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • Lore Devos looks to pass on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • Tori Williams after passing the ball on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • Colorado State University basketball player Megan Jacobs dribbles the ball up court on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • The Rams watch their teammates on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • The Colorado State Rams watch their teammates play the United States Air Force Academy March 1, 2020. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • Megan Jacobs dribbles the ball up court on Mar. 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • Colorado State University basketball player Makenzie Ellis shoots on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • Andrea Brady takes a free throw on Mar. 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • Tori Williams reaches for the ball on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • Andrea Brady (32) takes a free throw, March 1, 2020. Despite an encouraging second half, Colorado State University lost to the United States Air Force Academy 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • Colorado State University basketball player Lore Devos prepares to shoot on March 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

  • Tori WIlliams looks to pass the ball on Mar. 1. Despite an encouraging second half, the Rams lost to the Falcons 60-48. (Ryan Schmidt | The Collegian)

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Bailey Bassett can be reached at sports@collegian.com or on Twitter @baileybassett_.