Vanderbilt holds off Colorado 65-59
Updated: Friday March 23, 2001 8:58 AM
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) --Vanderbilt's Zuzi Klimesova has this NCAA tournament thing figured out.
"I just stopped thinking," she explained after scoring 20 points, 12 while leading scorer Chantelle Anderson was out with four fouls, to lead the Commodores past Colorado 65-59 on Monday night in the second round of the Midwest Regional.
Vanderbilt trailed by four points when Anderson, a 6-foot-6 center who leads the nation in field-goal percentage, picked up her fourth foul with 14:20 to play. She scored 22 points.
Klimesova carried the Commodores (23-9) until Anderson returned almost nine minutes later, and together they lifted Vanderbilt into the regional semifinals in Denver against Iowa State.
"When I went to the bench I was really disappointed, but this team is getting used to playing with me in foul trouble, unfortunately," Anderson said. "I told Zuzi that big players step up in big games. She stepped up. She took on the big girls inside, and it was awesome."
Jenny Roulier led the Buffaloes (22-9) with 17 points and Eisha Bohman added 14.
Jenni Benningfield added 11 points and 11 rebounds for Vanderbilt. Klimesova and Anderson each had 10 rebounds.
Colorado led 43-39 when Anderson had to sit down, but Klimesova filled the void and then some. Her basket with seven minutes left put the Commodores up 56-53 and her 3-pointer at 5:48 made it 59-55.
"We knew she'd go to center and that could be dangerous for us," Colorado coach Ceal Barry said. "Then your worst nightmare is she comes out and shoots the 3. She was my biggest concern going in, and unfortunately that came true."
A pair of free throws by Jillian Danker stretched Vanderbilt's lead to 61-55. A basket by Colorado's Linda Lappe with 2:09 to go made it 61-57. Then Anderson sealed the game with a three-point play at 1:52 for a 64-57 lead.
One more basket by Lappe was all the Buffaloes could manage.
"We just play differently (with Anderson out)," Vanderbilt coach Jim Foster said. "When she comes out we can put five people on the floor who can handle the ball and shoot the 3. It's a hard team to guard. If your goal is to guard Chantelle, then all of a sudden it's a different team."
Anderson, who had two 3-point field goals all season, added two more Monday. The second tied the game at 37 early in the second half, the first of five ties in the half.
When she was in the game Vanderbilt was determined to go inside to Anderson, who is on the verge of putting the most efficient shooting season in NCAA history into the books, and Colorado was just as determined to stop it. Players guarding Anderson picked up six fouls in the first 71/2 minutes, including two each against the starting and reserve centers.
The battle was a draw in the first half; Anderson scored 11 points but Colorado led 33-30 behind Roulier's 12 points.
Vanderbilt, the nation's top shooting team at 55 percent, was
held to 44 percent.