Fort Lewis puts Zias away in second half

CNJ staff

DURANGO, Colo. — Host Fort Lewis took the lead for good with a 14-2 run in the first half, then broke the game open with a 15-6 surge early in the second stanza Thursday to top Eastern New Mexico University’s women 78-64 in the season opener for both teams.

The game was part of a three-team, three-night, round-robin event. The Zias face St. George, Utah-based Dixie College at 6 p.m. tonight before Dixie and Fort Lewis get together on Saturday.

Sophomore post Allison Rosel came off the bench to post game highs of 19 points and eight rebounds for the Skyhawks. She went 6-of-9 from the field, including a 3-pointer, and 6-of-6 from the free throw line.

Senior forward Laura Redfern added 16 points and sophomore guard Laura Haugen 14 for Fort Lewis.

Freshman forward Til-Lois Fifer poured in 16 points on 7-of-9 field goal shooting for the Zias, while freshman guard Tori Northcutt finished with 11 points.

The Zias took a pair of one-point leads early before a layup by sophomore forward Audrey George gave the Skyhawks the lead for good at 9-8 with 15:15 left in the half and kicked off their early run.

ENMU closed a 13-point deficit to two points in the final minute of the half on a 3-pointer by Lacey Acker, and trailed 43-39 at the intermission. They got within 48-47 with 16:43 to go when Northcutt scored on a feed from Fifer, but the Skyhawks scored the next six points and expanded their lead to as much as 17 points in the final minute.

The Zias had a 26-25 edge in field goals, but shot 39 percent overall and went 4-of-9 from the free throw line to 23-of-31 for the Skyhawks.