Nov. 25, 2006
The Colorado State women's basketball team was unable to hold on to a 14-point halftime lead, as Western Carolina stormed back to defeat the Rams, 64-60 in the championship game of the 2006 Coors Rocky Mountain Invitational. With the loss, Colorado State is 2-3 on the season, while Western Carolina evens its record at 3-3.
The Rams and Lady Catamounts each started slowly on the offensive end of the court, but Colorado State put together an 8-0 run early in the first half to take a 16-9 lead at the 11:55 mark of the contest. The Rams' lead hovered around that point for most of the remainder of the first half, but Colorado State pushed the lead to 14 with a 9-2 run over the final 3:22 of the half to take a 14-point lead into the locker room.
After freshman Kelly Jo Mullaney's jumper to open the second half, Colorado State appeared to be on its way to an easy victory as the lead reached 16 points. However, the Lady Catamounts responded with a 7-0 run to bring the Rams' lead back to single-digits.
Following a Mullaney jumper and a lay-up by freshman Juanise Cornell, the Rams offense suffered a drought that it was unable to recover from for the remainder of the contest. Over the final 16 minutes of the game, Colorado State mustered just three field goals and Colorado State shot a dismal 26.9 percent from the floor in the second stanza.
After a 9-0 Western Carolina run that began at the 10:20 mark and ended with six minutes left in the game, the Lady Catamounts regained the lead, 51-50 for the first time since leading 9-8, just five minutes into the game.
Tournament MVP Monique Dawson was clutch down the stretch for Western Carolina. She accounted for nine of the Lady Catamounts final 13 points to seal the 64-60 victory.
Mullaney led the way for the Rams once again, finishing with 16 points, five rebounds and four assists. Senior Molly Nohr added 13 points, seven rebounds and a team-leading five assists. Freshman Juanise Cornell set a career-high with 10 rebounds for the Rams.
Four players finished in double figures for Western Carolina, led by Ashley Pellom's 16 points. Lauren Powell and Chevon Keith each added 15, and Dawson finished with 14 points.
Mullaney earned all-tournament honors for the Rams along with Sara Tuomi of Weber State and Keith, Pellom from Western Carolina. Dawson was named the tournament MVP.