Katrina Selsor leads Mavs to rout of ‘Jackets

If there were any doubts the Colorado Mesa University women’s basketball team would respond after its first loss of the season, Katrina Selsor took care of them.

The senior forward scored a career-high 31 points, only seven off the school single-game record, to lead the No. 7 Mavericks to a convincing 83-55 victory Friday night over Black Hills State at Brownson Arena.

“I’m not taking these off,” she joked, referring to the power of the hot pink shoe laces many of the players wore as part of their “Pink in the Paint” weekend to raise money for breast cancer research.

The Mavericks (19-1, 15-1 RMAC) didn’t have their usual quick start, but instead methodically put away the Yellowjackets (7-13, 6-10), attacking the paint with Selsor and Kelsey Sigl, who finished with 16 points.

“(Katrina) did a great job attacking the basket,” CMU coach Taylor Wagner said. “She’s difficult to defend because she can shoot the 3, can get to the basket and is a great free-throw shooter.

“The one thing I’m happy about with her is she looked for it. She wanted it. You can tell tonight she wasn’t going to settle for making the passes and everything. She was really looking to score. We need that, and we’re a great team when she’s scoring for us.”

Black Hills hung with the Mavericks much of the first half, but Sigl hit a 3 from the corner to spark a 16-6 run and eased the lead to 39-28 when Selsor grabbed an offensive rebound and shuffled to Sigl for a layup with 3:18 to play.

Selsor hit a 3 and made two free throws in the final minute for a 44-32 halftime lead.

The Mavericks never let Black Hills back in the game.

“It’s been awhile since we’ve actually buried a team like that, like we’re supposed to do,” Selsor said. “We played really well as a team, and we need to do better on the defensive end, but we played really well on the offensive end. We’re still not playing our best basketball. Our ceiling is really high, and we can still improve.”

Taylor Rock’s 3-pointer got Mesa off to a 14-7 spurt to open the second half for a 56-41 lead.

Selsor did a little bit of everything, hitting 10 of 13 from the field, two of three 3-pointers and nine of 10 free throws. Her main weapon, though, was attacking the basket and using back screens for layups.

She broke her previous high of 25 points when she came off a back screen, took a lob from her sister, Sharaya, on an inbounds play and hit the layup and the free throw for her 27th point of the night. She finished with her seventh double-double of the season, grabbing 10 rebounds.

“My teammates found me when I was open,” Katrina Selsor said. “I tried to be more aggressive offensively and finish like I need to for our team. They found me when I was open, and we got it done.”

She added two free throws and wrapped up her night on another roll to the basket, getting a pass from Sigl for a 73-47 lead with 7:16 to play. She headed to the bench soon after that, seven points off Tonya Stites’ single-game scoring record of 38 points.

Black Hills shot 56.5 percent from the field in the first half, but the Mavs wore down the ‘Jackets, who shot only 37.5 percent in the second.

The Mavericks were consistent, hitting 53 percent from the field and outscored Black Hills 22-7 at the free-throw line.

Point guard Christen Lopez chipped in 10 points and five assists for Colorado Mesa. The stat Wagner liked the best, though, was the Mavs’ 36-19 advantage on the boards after being outrebounded by Colorado Mines and Colorado Christian last weekend.

After their first loss of the season, the Mavericks took a collective deep breath and started over.

“Exactly,” Katrina Selsor said. “I don’t think it was good we had to take a loss to figure out what we needed to do in practice. We’re still not there, and we’re still trying to find where our energy was at the beginning of the year, but I think we’re finding it.”

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