Basketball: Surge lifts Air Force to 65-56 win over Denver

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A late rally propelled Air Force (1-2) to a 65-56 win over Denver University (0-2) in women's basketball action Nov. 16 at Clune Arena. Trailing by two, the Falcons closed out the final six minutes of the game with a 24-13 run to earn its first win of the season.

The win snapped a seven-game losing streak to the Pioneers dating back to 1996. 

In a tight, see-saw battle with seven ties and six lead-changes, Air Force finally took control late in the game with a play by freshman Raimee Beck and senior Jamie Davis. 

Trailing by two, Davis scored Air Force's next eight points to put the Falcons ahead 49-47 with a little under six minutes to go. After DU tied the game up, Pamela Findlay hit a jumper to put Air Force back ahead. Beck then connected on back-to-back three's to give the Falcons a commanding 57-49 lead with just under three minutes to go.

Beck led the Falcons with a career-high 21 points, shooting 6-of-9 from the field and 5-of-7 from long distance. The freshman point guard played the entire 40 minutes and committed just one turnover to go with three assists.

Senior Alecia Steele, who had to leave the game midway through the second period with an injury, finished second of the Falcons with 16 points. Steele led the team with 13 rebounds, recording her second double-double of the season and 17th of her career.

Findlay added 13 points and was a perfect 7-of-7 from the free throw line. Davis finished with 12 points and five rebounds.

Despite an off-night shooting, junior Brooke Cultra was a solid contributor on the rebounding end, finishing with 10 boards, five offensive. Junior Chasmine Jones contributed with a team-high three steals in a career-high 23 minutes of action.

Air Force overcame a cold start, which saw the team shoot 16.7 percent from the field in the opening half. The Falcons rebounded with a 46.7 effort in the second half to finish with a 31.7 shooting percentage on the day.

Denver was led by Nnenna Akotaobi, who finished with 24 points and four assists. Sara Benham added 12 points and four rebounds. 

Air Force out-rebounded Denver 43-36 and made 21-of-26 free throws to DU's 8-for-11.

The Falcons return to action Nov. 21 at St. Francis, N.Y. 

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