Tournament notes: Rams open MW tournament as No. 3 seed
March 6, 2012
After closing out the regular season with an overall record of 13-16, and posting a 9-5 record in Mountain West action, the Colorado State women's basketball team enters the 2012 Conoco MW Basketball Tournament as the No. 3 seed. It is the highest seed CSU has earned since 2002-03.
The Rams moved up one spot in the standings from 2010-11, and captured nine conference victories under Head Coach Kristen Holt. The nine league victories are the most by a Rams squad since the 2001-02 team posted a record of 12-2 in MW play and earned a No. 1 seed.
This is the third time since the inaugural season in the Mountain West that Colorado State has entered the tournament as the third seed, doing so previously in 2003 and 2000.
Following the Rams...
All of the Rams' games at the 2012 MW tournament will be broadcast live on AM 1410 KIIX in the Fort Collins area. Matt Wozniak, in his third season, calls all the action. Live game audio will also be available via Rams All-Access subscription on CSURams.com.
Live statistics are available free of charge on TheMWC.com by clicking on the MW Tournament Central page at http://www.themwc.com/champ/12-mwc-bb-tourney.html. Fans can also follow the action from their mobile device at MWScores.com
Fans can catch live telecasts of the quarterfinal and semifinal rounds on The Mtn. (Comcast 411; DirecTV 616). The women's championship game, scheduled for Saturday at 2 p.m. MT, will be broadcast nationally on NBC Sports (Comcast 55; DirecTV 603; DISH 151).
CSU's MW tournament history...
Colorado State is 10-11 all-time in the Mountain West tournament, including a 9-8 mark in tournament games played in Las Vegas, Nev.
In 2001, the Rams rolled to a 3-0 mark to capture the tournament championship. Last season three players scored double figures and Sam Martin posted a double-double, but it wasn't enough to defeat eighth-seeded Air Force in the first round.
Below is a listing of the Rams' record vs. each league foe at the MW tournament:
|San Diego State||1||1-0|
Building a program of excellence...
The Rams finished out the 2011-12 regular season with a 13-16 record, third place in the Mountain West and the best conference record (9-5) under Head Coach Kristen Holt since she took over the reins four season ago. The Rams surpassed their conference win total from last season on Feb. 14, in a 67-58 victory over league newcomer Boise State. Colorado State also showed a solid performance at home. The Rams closed out their home schedule 10-3 on the season, tying the eighth-highest win percentage ever at Moby Arena (.769). CSU also finished the year undefeated at home in league play, going 7-0 on the Moby court.
2011-12 big wins...
On Jan. 21 Head Coach Kristen Holt earned her second career victory over Wyoming and her first during the regular season. The Rams broke the Cowgirls' four-game winning streak in the all-time series. Entering the game, CSU had lost 13 of 14 meetings with Wyoming since Jan. 28, 2005. The Rams recorded a season-low of 11 turnovers in the game and Hayley Thompson shot 4-7 for scoring nine points, contributing four assists and three steals on the afternoon.
Then on Feb. 11, Colorado State snapped another streak, defeating TCU for the first time in 13 years, 61-59. It was either team's game until the final seconds when Meghan Heimstra drew a charge with 40 ticks on the clock, creating a TCU turnover. Though two players could not convert from the free-throw line, Heimstra came up big again for the Rams, grabbing an offensive board off a missed free-throw attempt, securing a CSU victory.
In the final home game of the season on Feb. 25, Holt beat her first 20-win team vs. San Diego State. The teams were knotted at 62 until freshman LaDeyah Forte hit a go-ahead jumper with 43 seconds remaining. The Aztecs, who had lost just once in MW play, were forced to foul, sending senior Kim Mestdagh to the line. She made all four of her shots from the charity stripe, sealing the win.
A pair of sweeps for the Rams...
Four of Colorado State's Mountain West victories in 2012 came at the expense of two programs, as the Rams earned regular-season sweeps over Air Force and Boise State. Head Coach Kristen Holt is undefeated in her career vs. Air Force in the regular season with eight league wins. It was the first time the Rams swept the Broncos, who joined the MW this year.
For the first time since 2002-03, the Rams were undeated at home in conference play, compiling a 7-0 record. CSU (9-5) earned a winning record in Mountain West games for the first time since 2003-04. Colorado State's nine wins are the most the program has had in conference play since 2001-02.
With just three losses at Moby Arena this season, the Rams' .769 (10-3) win percentage ranks eighth all-time in the women's basketball record book.
The Big 5-0...
Head Coach Kristen Holt earned her 50th win at Colorado State on Feb. 25 vs. San Diego State. She became the fifth head coach in program history to achieve 50 or more wins at CSU.
Holt is the third coach in the program to reach the mid-centrury mark in four seasons or less. Former head coach Chris Denker achieved 50 wins in three seasons, and Tom Collen led the squad with former standout Becky Hammon to 50 wins in just two seasons at the helm.
2012 all-conference honors...
Colorado State guard Kim Mestdagh, forward Sam Martin and forward Meghan Heimstra received special honors Monday.
Mestdagh earned first-team all-Mountain West recognition, while Martin was honored with a second-team selection. Heimstra was named the Mountain West Sixth Player of the Year.
This is the first time the Rams have had three or more all-conference selections since the 2003-04 season when CSU had five honorees.
The 2012 selection marks Mestdagh's third consecutive appearance on an all-Mountain West team. She earned second-team all-Mountain West honors in 2010 and 2011. For Martin this is her second all-Mountain West honor as she was named third-team all-Mountain West in 2011. Heimstra receives her first collegiate honor. These three Rams helped CSU (13-16, 9-5 MW) secure the third seed in this week's Mountain West tournament.