DENTON (2/19/04) -- Denver shot 55 percent from the floor and held off a late thrust from the Mean Green as the Pioneers defeated North Texas, 67-58, in a women's Sun Belt Conference basketball game at the Super Pit Thursday night.
The Pioneers (12-12, 5-7) connected on 26 of 47 field goals to hold off the Mean Green, who dropped to 9-15 overall and 5-7 in league play.
"We had some good defensive stops for a stretch in the second half but we could not score. The way our guards are shooting, we have to go inside with the ball or get to the free throw line," said North Texas head coach Tina Slinker. "I was happy with the effort tonight. We just have to shoot better. We must have taken eight shots on two possessions to tie the score, but we could not hit the shot. I think if we could have just tied it up we would have been all right. When you shoot 30 percent in the second half and only 37 percent for the game, it is hard to win games. You have to give Denver credit. They shot 70 percent from the field in the first half".
North Texas managed to out-rebound the Pioneers by a 41-32 margin, but the Mean Green shot just 37 percent from the floor (25-of-66) and hit just four of 12 free throws. Denver opened up a 34-21 lead with 6:06 in the first half with red-hot shooting. The Pioneers shot 57 percent from the floor in the first half. The Mean Green trimmed the Pioneer lead to 38-32 at the break thanks to an 11-4 run to end the half.
North Texas cut the Pioneer lead to two at 50-48 with 10:29 remaining. With Denver leading 53-51 at 7:58 left, both teams went scoreless over the next 4:21 until Denver pulled away from North Texas for good with a 7-0 run to make it 60-51.
Senior forward Kim Blanton led the Mean Green with 17 points and 10 rebounds, her fourth double-double of the season. North Texas continues their home stand Saturday February 21 with a battle against Louisiana-Lafayette.