Women’s basketball travels south to take on the Falcons

Tyler Meguire

Photo illustration show an image of both male and female basketball players with the text "In the Paint, Collegian Basketball Coverage"
(Graphic Illustration by Colin Crawford | The Collegian)

The Colorado State Rams women’s basketball team gets to return to the court and take on the United States Air Force Academy this Saturday after not playing since Feb. 6.

The series against The University of New Mexico, initially scheduled to begin on Feb. 12, was set to be a clash of the top two teams in the Mountain West Conference standings prior to it being postponed due to COVID-19 issues within the Lobos program.

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Now rescheduled, the Rams will travel to Albuquerque, New Mexico, to play the Lobos on March 3 and 5

The series against the University of Nevada, Reno was also postponed due to a positive COVID-19 test within the opposing team’s program. However, the Mountain West indicated this series will be declared no contest and will not be rescheduled, like the series against the Lobos. 

While the Wolf Pack — 9-8 overall and 5-7 in conference play — is not quite as strong as the Lobos, the value of competition cannot be overstated in a year when gameplay is not promised.

The Rams are at the top of the table with an overall record of 14-2 and a conference record of 10-2. The Lobos are second with an overall record of 9-2 and a conference record of 6-2. The green and gold’s upcoming two-game series against Air Force will provide great insight into if CSU will rise to the occasion and finish out the year strong. 

One big goal for CSU

The Rams will have had 21 days between games when they step on the Falcons’ court on Saturday. Although Air Force is currently second to last in the Mountain West standings with a conference record of 2-10, this series cannot be overlooked. It is imperative for CSU to have a good showing this weekend in order to prove to themselves and the rest of the conference that rust has not settled on this squad. 

While Air Force struggles offensively, scoring a conference-worst average of 59.9 points per game, they are a legitimate defensive team. The Falcons rank second in the conference in average points allowed per game, giving up just 64.1. Defense past the three-point line sees the Falcons fall more towards the middle of the pack, which will be something CSU will definitely try to exploit. 

Teams are shooting an average of 30.8% from beyond the arc against Air Force and the Rams are shooting 40.4% from three on the season. If CSU can continue their long-range dominance, this could be a long night for the Falcons. 

If the Rams execute as expected, this should be a good tune up series to snap back into gameplay and get ready for a deep run in the Mountain West tournament. 

Tyler Meguire can be reached at sports@collegian.com or on Twitter @TMeguire.

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