DURANGO, Colo. (GoThunderWolves.com – Mar. 4, 2014) – Despite a solid 26-point effort from senior Nate Tigner (Fort Worth, Texas), the Colorado State University-Pueblo ThunderWolves found it too tough to defeat rival Fort Lewis College for the third time this season as the Skyhawks overcame a 10-point half-time deficit to claim a 79-68 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Shootout quarterfinal win over the Pack, Tuesday night here in Whalen Gymnasium.
Tigner went 10-for-16 from the floor and drilled three 3-pointers, all of which came in the second half, and scored 18 points in the second half alone. However, the rest of the Pack shot at just a 12.0 percent (3-25) clip in the final 20 minutes as the Skyhawks out-scored the visitors 50-29 in the period to claim the win.
In the process, Fort Lewis improved to 18-9 overall and advanced to the tournament's semifinals to be played at and against the nation's top-ranked Metro State University Roadrunners.
CSU-Pueblo fell to 15-12 as Tigner, Wendell Lee (Sr., Los Angeles, Calif.) and Matt Rosenbaum (Sr., Sidney, Neb.) all played their final collegiate games.
The ThunderWolves shot at a respectable 46.7 percent (14-30) clip from the field in the first half as all five starters chipped in six or more points, a balanced that helped the Pack take a 39-29 edge into the locker room.
However, the Skyhawks gradually chipped away at the deficit taking their first lead of the second half on two Oscar Garcia free throws with 8:27 left after he had tipped in a missed 3-pointer less than a minute earlier. Garcia scored eight of his of 16 points in a 12-0 run that proved to be the difference.
Meanwhile, Nick Tomsick finished the night with 24 while Alex Herrera posted a 16-point, 12-board double-double.
Julian Caldwell (Jr., Ontario, Calif.) and Rosenbaum added 12 points each for the Pack.
Tigner averaged 24.3 points in the three meetings against the Skyhawks and averaged 16.1 points per game throughout the season.