Colorado College Women's Basketball: Gertz Powers CC Past Crusaders

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IRVING, Texas – McKenzee Gertz dropped 16 of her season-high 26 points in the second half to lead the Colorado College women’s basketball team to a 75-57 victory over the University of Dallas on Friday night at the Maher Center.

After two points from Olivia Severson pulled the Crusaders to within three with 3:20 remaining in the third quarter, Gertz sank a pair of free throws to ignite a 14-3 surge that gave the Tigers a 14-point cushion with 10 minutes to play.

The junior winger capped her performance with 10 more points in the fourth quarter to help CC build a commanding 69-48 lead with 5:08 remaining in the contest. Gertz, who eclipsed the 20-point mark for the fifth time this season, also grabbed eight rebounds and had a pair of assists.

Sophomore guard Jade Odom produced 12 points, eight rebounds and four assists for the Tigers, who improved to 9-10 overall and 6-5 in the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference.

Despite being whistled for her fifth foul with 4:52 to go, senior guard Casey Torbet finished with 11 points, five rebounds and five assists.

Freshman guard Izzy Strigel reached double-figures for the fifth time this season with 10 points.

Colorado College was 0-for-10 from behind the arc before Strigel connected from the right corner to give her team a 51-39 lead with 1:30 remaining in the third quarter.

The Tigers appeared to be creating separation when junior guard Nia Duplain’s layup put CC ahead by 11 points 21 seconds into the third quarter.

However, Vanessa Diaz scored six of her 15 points as Dallas answered with an 18-6 surge to close to within three.

Despite struggling in its half-court set, a pair of three-pointers with the shot clock nearly expired helped the Crusaders overcome an early four-point deficit and take a 15-13 lead at the end of the first quarter.

After shooting a fraction under 30 percent during the first frame, Colorado College used its defense pressure and turned seven UD turnovers into nine points in the second frame.

Baskets by junior forward Julia Moore and Gertz gave the Tigers the lead 34 seconds into the second period, and after Jules Oliveti tied the score at 17-17 with 9:01 to play before halftime, CC outscored the Crusaders 13-4 to take a 30-21 lead into the locker room.

Faith Starnes went 5-for-10 from downtown and finished with 15 points.

Oliveti posted a double-double with 12 points and a game-high 10 rebounds for UD, which dropped to 1-16 overall and 1-8 in conference play.

With Friday’s victory, Colorado College stretched its lead over Schreiner University in the battle for fifth place in the conference standings. The Mountaineers suffered a 75-53 setback at Austin College on Friday night.

The Tigers can climb higher in the standings next week when they play their final home games of the season against Southwestern University and Texas Lutheran University on Friday and Saturday, respectively.