CMU men, women basketball teams score victories
In Colorado Mesa’s men’s basketball system, it can be anyone at any time.
Case in point: With 11 seconds left in the first half Saturday night at Black Hills State, the Mavericks trailed 33-31.
Clay Kame grabbed a defensive rebound and Kevin Screen, with 5 seconds on the clock, hit a 3-pointer. He was fouled and hit the bonus for a four-point play and gave the Mavericks the momentum heading into halftime up 35-33.
“It took us awhile to get going and it seems like everybody else makes three-point plays or four-point plays on us,” associate head coach Andy Shantz said after the Mavericks pulled away for an 86-72 victory.
“Kevin banked it in and we went up and had the lead at the half when we really weren’t playing well.”
And although the Mavericks (5-1, 2-0 RMAC) got points from the usual contributors, with Colton Burgon scoring 19 and Jeff Hart 17, they also got a lift from the bench.
Landon Vermeer scored 15 points and freshman post Ryan Stephan, who added 14, 10 in the second half.
Those two baseline jumpers game in the first six minutes of the second half, giving the Mavericks a 49-44 lead. But the Yellow Jackets, who joined the RMAC this year, came back and took a 63-61 lead before Vermeer buried a 3-pointer with 6:01 remaining.
He added another 3 a minute and a half later and the Mavericks held on over the final three minutes, outscoring Black Hills 51-39 in the second half.
Mesa shot 59 percent from the field and again shared the ball, with 23 assists on 32 baskets.
“We don’t run that star system,” Shantz said. “If someone’s not playing well, someone will pick them up and pick up that slack. If you have one player night in and night out, it’s easier to take that away. We’ve always strived to be more balanced.”
With 6:51 to play in the first half and Colorado Mesa leading 28-23, Taylor Wagner called time.
“We talked about finishing the half off right,” the first-year coach said after the Mavs remained undefeated with a 77-48 victory at Black Hills State.
“From the 6:30 mark we went on a 12-0 run, really stretched it at the end of the half. We got stops every single time and went down and executed and got great shots and scored.
“I told the girls I thought that was the best six minutes of the whole game.”
It started with a three-point play by Katrina Selsor and a couple of free throws by Bruna Deichmann.
When the teams went to the locker rooms, the Mavs (6-0, 2-0 RMAC) were in control, 40-23.
Katrina Selsor scored 20 points and had seven rebounds, with Kelsey Sigl adding 17 points and Bruna Deichmann 13 points and seven rebounds.
Selsor found lanes to the basket and was repeatedly fouled, and made all eight free-throw attempts and went 6 of 7 from the field.
“She’s just so good with what she does,” Wagner said. “I think she reads the game really well. When she knows she has to score, she can. She knows when she has to be a passer and she does it. She’s got a good feel for the game.”
The Mavericks shot nearly 42 percent from the field and 89 percent from the free-throw line, and caused twice as many turnovers as they committed, 18-9, and scored 25 points off turnovers.