The Skyhawks hung tough on the back end of a difficult road trip, but the mighty Westminster College Griffins wouldn’t let Fort Lewis College pick up a second consecutive big win.
Westminster (16-3, 14-1 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference) had four starters finish in double-digit scoring led by Kaylee Carlsen’s 24 points on 7-of-12 shooting that included 3-of-6 from 3-point range while she also went a perfect 7-of-7 at the foul line. That helped the Griffins to a 69-62 win Saturday night in Salt Lake City, where the Griffins are 8-1 this season.
One night after FLC beat Dixie State 66-60, the Skyhawks didn’t quite have enough against the second-place team in the RMAC.
After FLC (9-12, 5-10 RMAC) trailed 15-11 after one quarter, the Skyhawks outscored the home team 22-14 in the second quarter to take a 33-29 lead into the locker room at halftime. But the Griffins outscored FLC 25-14 in the third quarter to take command and held on the rest of the way.
“We came out and played pretty hard and battled a really, really good team on their home floor down to the wire,” FLC head coach Jason Flores said. “We just didn’t finish a few defensive plays with rebounds, and that really cost us the game.”
The Skyhawks were outrebounded 36-29 in the game and allowed 11 offensive rebounds that led to 12 second-chance points.
Jordan Carter led FLC with 16 points and six rebounds, while Sydney Candelaria scored 12 points. Kayla Herrera finished with nine points, all on 3-point makes. Alyssa Yocky added seven points and six rebounds.
Olivia Elliss chipped in 15 points and 12 rebounds for the Griffins, as she had four offensive rebounds in the game. Denise Gonzalez added 11 points and seven rebounds, while Kaitlin Toluono had 10 points and seven rebounds with three on the offensive end.
“We got the stops we needed but didn’t finish it with tough rebounds,” Flores said. “That was the name of the game.”
FLC went 2-2 on a tough four-game road trip and will finish the regular season with five of its next seven games at home. Colorado Christian will visit at 5:30 p.m. Friday, followed by Regis at the same time Saturday. The Skyhawks are currently 12th in the RMAC standings and are three games back of eighth place, as only the top-eight teams make the RMAC tournament.
“Our players are playing hard, and we will get back home and get after it again this weekend,” Flores said.