|Posted January 7, 2012|
Pack again loses by slim margin
Hard loss overshadows 30-plus point performance by Dennis.
GUNNISON, Colo. (GoThunderWolves.com - Jan. 7, 2012) - For the fourth time this season, CSU-Pueblo was on the short end of a loss by six points or less, falling 76-72 to Western State after a raucous comeback attempt came up short.
CSU-Pueblo was trailing 69-57 with 3:20 left, seemingly dead on arrival, when they ramped it up to threaten for the win.
A bevy of big plays, almost all of them coming from Arden Dennis (Jr., Aurora, Colo.), helped the ThunderWolves go on a 14-1 run to take a 71-70 lead. It all started when an Andre Martin (Sr., San Diego, Calif.) steal led to a momentum-stealing slam dunk by Dennis, cutting Western's lead to 69-61.
Dennis then scored the next bucket by draining a three, cutting the lead to six. It was followed by back-to-back steals, the first by Martin and the second by Dennis, the latter of which brought the Pack to within two, 70-68.
The comeback was complete when Dennis drained another three, coming at the 46-second mark, giving the ThunderWolves an unlikely 71-70 lead.
However, foul shooting would be the difference as Western moved ahead after draining both free throws after a Kevin Coates (Sr., Annapolis, Md.) foul at the 27-second mark. It would go up 74-41 after Alex Hart drained another pair of Western State freebies with eight seconds left, creating a tough bid to win which fell through after a post-free throw turnover under the bucket doomed CSU-Pueblo.
Dennis finished with 31 points, the most points scored by a ThunderWolf since 2009-10, but only one other Pack player, Ty Trahern (Sr., Kit Carson, Colo.), scored in double-digits with 15 points.
The loss drops the Pack to 7-6 overall and 4-5 in RMAC play.
CSU-Pueblo's next opponent will be one of the toughest in school history as the nation's top-ranked team, Metro State, comes to Massari Arena Friday night.