Colorado Springs, Colorado – The 22nd-ranked Trinity women's basketball team defeated host school Colorado College 76-70 in Saturday's Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Tournament Semifinals.
Although Trinity never trailed in the game, Colorado mounted rally after rally to make it an exciting finish.
Trinity started by scoring the first five points of the game, but Colorado was back within one (6-7) at the midway point of the first quarter. The Tigers finished on an 11-2 run, though, and led 20-10 after the first 10 minutes of action.
Trinity continued its tear into the second quarter, scoring eight of the first 10 points as the lead soared to 16 points (28-12). Colorado was able to bring the deficit down to 10 down the stretch, but Trinity finished strong and took a 37-24 lead into the locker room.
The Trinity defense was especially effective, forcing 16 first-half turnovers that included a whopping 13 in the first quarter alone. Trinity also held Colorado to just 34.6% (9-26) shooting overall and just 1-8 from three-point range.
Colorado made its move to start the third quarter, needing less than three minutes of game action to knock Trinity's lead down to just four points (38-34). After Trinity pushed it back to eight, Colorado scored seven unanswered points in less than a minute to draw within one at 43-44.
The lead was still one with 90 seconds left in the third quarter, and Trinity had scored just 10 points in the period. The Tigers changed that down the stretch, though, rattling off six straight points to take a 53-46 lead into the final quarter.
Colorado hit 9-15 (56.3%) from the field in the third quarter, while Trinity's offense struggled with just five made field goals.
After Colorado started the fourth period with a bucket that cut the lead to five points, Trinity pieced together an 11-5 run to take a 64-53 lead with under six minutes remaining in the game.
Despite that double-digit deficit, the home team wasn't quite done. Colorado scored nine straight points to make it just a 64-62 Trinity lead with 3:36 to play.
After Micah Weaver's three-pointer pushed Trinity back in front by five, Colorado answered with a three of its own and hit 1-2 at the foul line to sneak back within one at 67-66.
Trinity got back-to-back layups from Abby Holland on its next two possessions, and Colorado missed a three-point attempt to put the Tigers back up by five (71-66) with 1:20 left.
After a Colorado score, Mollie Hughes hit a clutch shot off the glass with 35 seconds to go, and then the Tigers hit 3-4 from the foul line down the stretch to escape with the win.
Trinity improves its record to 22-3 this season, while Colorado falls to 10-17 with the loss. Trinity swept all three meetings against Colorado this season.
Abby Holland led Trinity with her third 20-point game of the season, tallying 20 points on 8-15 shooting, and pulling down six rebounds in more than 30 minutes on the floor.
Mollie Hughes was another strong inside presence for the Tigers, connecting on 8-10 from the field for 18 points and adding three blocked shots.
Micah Weaver scored 19 points to go with a game-high nine rebounds, adding three assists and a pair of steals.
Julia Ackerman came off the bench to dish out a Trinity-best four assists, as well as scoring eight points and grabbing two steals.
Trinity will face off against either Austin (TX) College or Southwestern (TX) University in Sunday's SCAC Championship game at 2:00 p.m. (MST).