CSU women’s basketball lose to San Diego, next hosting UNLV

Colorado+State+forward+Karly+Murphy+%2842%29+talks+to+Guard+Upe+Atosu+%285%29+after+the+ball+was+knocked+out+of+bounds

Collegian | Devin Cornelius

Colorado State forward Karly Murphy (42) talks to Guard Upe Atosu (5) after the ball was knocked out of bounds Feb 24, 2021. Atosu and Murphy scored a combined 28 points in the 80-69 loss to San Diego State University at home.

CTV Sports: Emily Kozel

Bryson Schminke, Sports Writer

The Colorado State University women’s basketball team played San Diego State University for their state pride game. This is the second time the teams will be facing each other, with San Diego State previously winning, 73-63.

Before the game, Colorado State had an 18-7 record and 9-6 conference record, making them fifth in the Mountain West Conference. San Diego had a 13-13 record and 7-8 conference record, making them seventh in the Mountain West.

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From the tipoff, Colorado State came out fast and ready, forcing a fast 10-point lead within the first quarter, 14-4. SDSU was forced to a timeout, then climbed back up to close the lead; however, the first quarter ended with the Rams on top, 22-15.

In the second quarter, the Rams seemed to be heavy on their feet, with San Diego having wide-open shots. The Aztecs got to a one-point deficit and stopped the Rams from scoring until 2 minutes and 50 seconds into the quarter.

Colorado State Guard Upe Atosu (5) drives under the basket and shoots a layup.
Colorado State Guard Upe Atosu (5) drives under the basket and shoots a layup, during the CSU home game vs San Diego State University. Atosu led the Rams 20 points in the 11 point loss to SDSU. (Collegian | Devin Cornelius)

After the Rams scored, they started to gain confidence in their game, pulling the lead back and playing more aggressive defense to force turnovers. The first half ended with a three-point lead for the Rams, 36-33.

Upe Atosu ended the first half with 12 points, which were all in the first quarter. McKenna Hofschild ended the first half with 9 points, coincidentally all in the second half.

San Diego came out in the new half with the first bucket — making the lead just one ahead for the Rams — soon followed by a made three, giving SDSU their first lead of the game, 38-37.

The quarter ended with a back-and-forth battle to see which team would take the lead. The Rams were still having the same trouble they have had all season with rebounds and giving teams second-chance points.

San Diego pulled through and took the lead, though, the Rams trailing just behind at the end of the third quarter, 51-50.

The fourth quarter began with Kendyll Kinzer making a three to take the lead back for the Rams. San Diego kept the score close shortly to have their largest lead of the game at 58-55 with 6:36 left in the game.

The Rams tried playing a much faster pace in hopes of gaining quick shots to get back into the game, but they were seemingly short. Colorado State was forced to foul to get as much time on the clock to score. San Diego unfortunately made their free throws and won, 69-61.

The Rams will be hosting to face University of Nevada, Las Vegas for their last home game of the season on Feb. 26 at 1 p.m. in Moby Arena.

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Reach Bryson Schminke at sports@collegian.com or on Twitter @brysons81.