Johnson Goes for 13, Denver Defeats UMBC, 70-48
Grace White added 12 points and Jordyn Alt scored 10
Dec. 7, 2017
BALTIMORE – The University of Denver women’s basketball team took some time to find its rhythm, but the squad found it in the second half to pull away from UMBC, 70-48.
The Pioneers improved to 6-4, matching last season’s win total, while the Retrievers dropped to 1-9.
Leading the way for DU was Briana Johnson, who scored 13 points, shooting 62.5 percent (5-for-8) from the field and 75 percent (3-for-4) from 3-point territory.
Tied at 36 with four minutes left in the third, Denver got hot and finished the period on a 13-3 run. Leading the way over the time was White, who chalked up five points. The strong run continued through the fourth, as the Pioneers finished the contest on a 34-12 run.
As a team, DU shot 48.3 percent (29-for-60) from field-goal range and 43.5 percent (10-for-23) from behind the arc. The team forced 17 turnovers from UMBC, handed out 22 assists, notched 10 steals and had three blocks.
Denver quickly took a 5-2 advantage to start the contest, with a triple from Claire Gritt and a 15-foot jumper from Alt.
The Pioneers got their first run of the game 9-2, capped off by an 18-foot jumper from Alt. The jump shot put DU up by seven, 14-7.
Looking to cut the Denver lead before the end of the first, UMBC’s Te’yJah Oliver attempted a 3-point buzzer-beater but was denied by Ciera Morgan.
A Johnson layup put the Pioneers up by 10, 21-11 at the start of the second.
The Retrievers were quick to respond and a deep two from Lakiah Sims, followed by a trey from Kristen Teklits had UMBC within two.
A layup from Teklits gave the Retrievers their first advantage of the game, 26-25 with two and a half minutes until the break, as the Crimson and Gold offense struggled to find the basket.
With just over a minute till the half, Weinman finally got DU going with a 3 to retake the lead. Lauren Loven followed suit with less than 30 seconds left and Denver took a five-point margin into the locker room.
Through the first half, the Pioneers shot a combined 43.3 percent (13-for-30) from the field and 30.8 percent (4-for-13) from behind the arc. The squad notched 16 rebounds, forced 10 turnovers and had eight steals.
After UMBC cut the edge to only one to start the third, Johnson connected with a huge 3 for Denver, pushing the lead back to four.
The Retrievers later tied the game at 36, but White drained a big trey for the Crimson and Gold and started a 13-0 run. Loven polished off the run for Denver, sinking the team’s third 3-pointer of the quarter.
The Pioneers pushed their lead to 12 with seven and a half minutes to play thanks to a layup from Jahla Osborne. The margin increased to 15, 56-41 following White’s second 3 of the game with only six minutes to play.
UMBC struggled to get any closer, as the Pioneers pulled away over the final few minutes.
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