Lady Titans battle for win over Moffat Cowboys

Hold off Lady Cowboy comeback

The Crested Butte Lady Titans came out of the holiday break fresh off a solid week of practice and opened the next part of the season against 2A team Center on Tuesday, January 5.
Center comes from an extremely competitive 2A league in the San Luis Valley and offers up a taste of some serious 2A speed. It was a tough way to break out of the vacation.
“It was the first game out of the break and we had to get rid of the cobwebs,” says coach MaryMike Haley.
The Lady Titans battled hard through the first half to stay within eight points, but the game got away from Crested Butte in the second half as they fell 58-34.
“Center had a fast break that we couldn’t keep up with,” explains Haley. “We just couldn’t get it together in the second half.”
The Lady Titans recovered from the loss to Center in time to win a league match up against the Moffat Cowboys on Friday, January 8 in Mt. Olympus.
Crested Butte opened the game against Moffat with an oppressive full-court press scoring points off turnovers.
The Lady Titans jumped out to a 13-2 lead in the first quarter with everyone contributing on offense.
Sophomore Sydney Jernigan hit a couple of short jumpers, downtown Toni Brown drained a 12-footer, and the Lady Titans turned three steals into easy lay ups for the early 11-point lead.
But just as fans appeared disinterested with the potential for another Lady Titans blow-out win, Moffat came charging back in the second quarter with their own full-court-press and scored eight straight points to cut the Crested Butte lead down to three.
Junior Melissa Gibbens finally broke the Lady Titans’ dry spell with a basket inside, but Moffat broke through the Crested Butte press with ease to score another easy lay-up, forcing Haley to call a timeout.
Freshman Maddie Stichter broke free up court off a Jernigan block to put the Lady Titans on top 17-12, but Moffat responded to tie the game 18-18 with a minute left in the half.
Senior Sydney Loyed scored inside in the waning seconds of the half to offer a brief respite from the Moffat onslaught and the Lady Titans shuffled into the locker room ahead 20-18.
“They started pressing us and that just frazzled our guards,” says Haley.
Crested Butte picked up their intensity for the third quarter, paced by Jernigan on offense, to rebuild a six-point lead but Moffat would not fold. The Cowboys continued to chip away at the Lady Titans to pull back within three points heading into the fourth quarter.
Baskets from junior Shannon Holleran helped pull the Lady Titans ahead 32-25 in the opening minutes of the fourth quarter but once again Moffat battled back.
Both teams threw caution to the wind in the fourth quarter, committing consecutive turnovers and scrapping for loose ball baskets.
Moffat climbed back to within two points with 13 seconds left, but Holleran hit a key free throw and the Lady Titans clamped down on defense for the 38-35 win.
“I was psyched with how they played and they came together as a team,” says Haley. “They stuck with it. There’s all the talent I’ve ever wanted out of a team out there, they’re just young.”
The Lady Titans continue league play at home as they host Aguilar on Friday, January 15 at Mt. Olympus. Tip-off time is 6 p.m. The boys return to action as well on Friday with their game against Aguilar starting at 7:30 p.m.

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