Feb. 8, 2014
By Craig Buchanan
Athletic Media Relations
FORT COLLINS, Colo. - The Colorado State Rams (18-4, 10-1 MW) put forth a performance for the ages with a dominating 88-28 victory over in-state rival Air Force (1-20, 0-11 MW) on Saturday afternoon in front of 2,209 fans at Moby Arena donning pink for CSU's annual Pink Out for breast cancer awareness.
The 60-point victory marks the largest victory for Colorado State since Nov. 16, 2001 when the Rams took down Sacramento State 102-30 at Moby Arena. Additionally the 28 points that the Rams allowed against the Falcons are the second-fewest points allowed in a single game in program history.
"You know it's a pretty good night when your bench gets more minutes than the starters," Head Coach Ryun Williams said. "It's good to get kids who don't get a lot of minutes a lot of minutes, and I thought they performed well so it was a fun game."
Senior forward Sam Martin led all scorers with 19 points and six rebounds on 8-9 shooting in just 19 minutes of action. Freshman forward Elin Gustavsson added 11 points while redshirt-sophomore guard Hanne Mestdagh scored a career-high 11 points. Junior forward Emile Hesseldal recorded her first career double-double in a CSU uniform with 10 points and 10 rebounds to join the other three Rams in double figures.
"It was a lot of fun and it was a team effort," Mestdagh said. "We started really well. It was fun, and I thought everyone came ready to play."
Air Force scored the first basket of the game, but from there on out, all facets of the game were controlled by the Rams. CSU quickly regained the lead and used a 14-0 run over just 2:31 to gain a double-digit lead over the Falcons. The Rams used suffocating defense and a blistering offensive attack to take a 53-13 lead heading into the intermission.
In the second half, the Rams continued to pour on the pressure as Air Force didn't make its first field goal of the half until 9:00 left in the game. The Falcons made just two field goals in the second half and were held to 15.6 percent shooting (7-45) in the game.
The Rams shot 56.9 percent from the field, and outscored the Falcons 46-6 in points in the paint. CSU also utilized turnovers to fuel instant offense with 31 points off of turnovers. Led by freshman guard Ellen Nystrom's team-high three steals, CSU racked up 14 steals as a team, marking the third-straight game that the team has tallied double-digit steals. In the previous 19 games, the Rams were averaging 5.9 steals per game.
Nystrom also led the Rams with five assists and chipped in with six points and eight rebounds in just 21 minutes of action. On the day, 10 different CSU players scored as the Rams ran their win-streak up to seven games. In those seven games, Colorado State has outscored its opponents by an average of 26.4 points per game. Additionally, with at least 40-point victories over San José State, San Diego State and now Air Force, the Rams have registered three 40-point victories in a single-season for just the second time in school history, equaling the mark set in the 1997-98 season.
Colorado State will look to improve its win-streak to eight games and maintain its lead in the Mountain West standings when the Rams travel to Logan, Utah to take on the Utah State Aggies on Wednesday night. The game will tip off at 7 p.m. MT and will be streamed on the Mountain West Network.
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