PUEBLO, Colo. (November 26, 2016)- Colorado State University-Pueblo women's basketball wrapped up its non-conference slate undefeated for the first time in school history. A double-double from Molly Rohrer lead the No.8/17 ranked Pack to 78-63 win over Wayland Baptist University in the final game of the Quality Inn & Suites Thanksgiving Classic at Massari Arena Saturday.
The victory gave the Pack its first 6-0 start in over 40 years. The ThunderWolves last started 6-0 in 1975-76 when they began the year 11-0. Wayland Baptist tasted defeat for the first time in 2016-17, falling to 4-1.
Rohrer (So., Greenwood Village, Colo.) earned her first career double - double with 23 points and 10 rebounds. The 10 boards marked a new career-high for Rohrer. She also drained 9-of-14 from the field and all five of her free throws. Rohrer is now shooting 91.7 percent from the line and 57.1 percent from the field this season.
The reigning RMAC Defensive Player of the Week also rejected three more shots. With 83 career blocks, Rohrer already ranks fifth all-time at CSU-Pueblo. She earned All-Thanksgiving Classic Tournament Team honors.
Katie Cunningham (Jr., Aurora, Colo.) claimed Thanksgiving Classic MVP honors running the point for the Pack. Cunningham scored 13 points on 5-of-6 shooting from the field. She was perfect on her only 3-point attempt and made both of her free throws. Cunningham filled the stats sheet with seven assists, seven rebounds, and three steals.
Sophomore Lauren Heyn (Loomis, Calif.) finished with a season-high 10 points. The sophomore made 5-of-7 from the field. Heyn also grabbed seven rebounds. She averaged 9.0 rebounds per game for the weekend.
Tuileisu Anderson (Vancouver, Wash.) received All-Thanksgiving Classic team honors with 18.0 points per game the tournament. Anderson totaled 15 points in the Pack's win over the Flying Queens. Anderson also snagged three steals and three rebounds.
Off the bench senior Jaszymn Johnson (Denver, Colo.) delivered 10 points. Johnson made 2-of her-3 tries from beyond the arc. She has 10 or more points in four of her six games this season.
A lid stayed on the ThunderWolves basket during the first quarter as the Flying Queens led throughout the opening frame. The Pack shot under 30 percent in the first quarter until a Cunningham layup cut the Pack's deficit to 18-14 at the end of the first. Cunningham had four points and three steals in the first quarter. Rohrer netted six points. However, the Flying Queens outshot the Pack 50.0 percent to 31.3 percent in the first.
CSU-Pueblo tied it up at 18 early in the second quarter, holding Wayland Baptist scoreless for the first 4:32 of the frame. The Flying Queens would reclaim a four-point lead early in the second. Trailing 27-25, the Pack went on a 9-0 run including their first three-pointer of the game to take a 34-25 lead they would never relinquish. The Pack's edge would stand at 34-27 at the half. Rohrer scored eight points in the second, making her last three shots of the quarter.
Much like they did one night earlier, the Pack caught fire to start the second half. A trio of 3-pointers gave the Pack a 9-2 run to start the second half and a double-digit lead for the first time in the game. Cunningham had an assist on all three 3-pointers, two from Anderson, one from Taylor Long (Jr., Moreno Valley, Calif.). Long had five assists for the Pack.
Wayland Baptist would not back down. The Flying Queens would cut the Pack's lead to four with 1:40 left in the third. An Anderson layup gave the Pack a 52-46 advantage entering the fourth quarter.
The two teams stayed close throughout the early part of the fourth quarter, until an 8-0 run upped the Pack's lead 68-56. Johnson drained two 3-pointers during this run. She scored eight points in the fourth quarter.
Though Wayland Baptist trimmed the lead to 72-63 with 2:40 left, the Pack would end the game on a 6-0 run to remain unbeaten.
The ThunderWolves won the turnover battle for just the second time in 2016-17. CSU-Pueblo forced 21 Flying Queen turnovers, while committing just 13. The Pack also outshot the Flying Queens .462-.346. After struggling in the first quarter, the Pack sank 51.0 percent of their shots in the final three quarters.
Undefeated in nonconference play for the first time in school history, CSU-Pueblo will now begin Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference play. The ThunderWolves visit Fort Lewis College for their RMAC opener Friday at 5:30 p.m.
- 30 –
As a member of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, Colorado State University – Pueblo competes in 22 varsity sports in NCAA Division II intercollegiate athletics