BROOMFIELD -- Trailing by double digits in the fourth period might have some players breaking a sweat, but not Emiley Lopez.

Coming from behind while the clock is ticking down is just the situation the Legacy senior lives for when on the court. That fact was more than evident in the defending Class 5A champions' game Tuesday night in the first round of the state tournament.

Lopez helped rally seventh-seeded Legacy to a 63-52 win over No. 10 Dakota Ridge, hitting the tying points midway through the period. And while there were some tense moments as the Lighting trailed by as many as 10 points to start the quarter, there was little doubt in the guard's mind how the game was going to end up.

"There was pressure entering the period trailing, but it was also a push," Lopez said. "We knew we had to get going."

Lopez helped Legacy (12-12) advance to Friday's second round at No. 2 Denver East (19-4). The guard put Dakota Ridge (7-17) on the defensive off a three-point play, when she nailed a layup and drew a foul. The drive turned out to be the tipping point.

"That really got our team going," said Lopez, one of three Lightning to finish in double digits. "We took off from there."

Legacy went on a 15-0 run starting with Lopez's work in the lane, finishing the final period with 29 points. But it was not all hot shots on the offensive end of the court. The team doubled down on its pressure defense in the second half, forcing 12 turnovers in the final 16 minutes of play.

"Our pressure bothered them and we were able to get some steals," Legacy coach Craig Van Patten said.

The most noticeable effect Legacy's defense had was shutting down Sydney Buchli. The Dakota Ridge guard lit it up the first half, entering intermission with 18 points. But she was a ghost in the final two periods, hitting one field goal and three of four free throws.

The win was heartening to Legacy, not only because the team aims to prove it still has some of the spunk that earned it its first state crown a year ago, but also because it came without one of the Lightning's top players on the floor.

Courtney Smith was injured in the Lightning's last regular season game when she hit the hardwood Thursday at Mountain Range. The sophomore hurt her neck in the incident, an injury serious enough that Van Patten does not expect her back in the postseason. But overcoming the loss of a player who figured big on either end of the court was par for the course for the coach, whose Lightning have overcome all sorts of adversity this season.

"We had a couple girls quit, one blew out her ACL at the beginning of the season and we've had key players with injuries at key times" Van Patten said. "And we've persevered to find ourselves in the playoffs."

Follow Elwood on Twitter @ElwoodKShelton.

Legacy 63, Dakota Ridge 52

At Legacy HS

DAKOTA RIDGE (7-17)

Valerio 1 0-1 3, Navratil 3 2-2 9, Buchli 9 5-10 23, Fisher 0 2-2 2, Sabo 0 2-2 2, Wood 3 3-4 9, Nelson 2 0-0 4. Totals 18 14-31 52.

LEGACY (12-12)

Lopez 3 7-8 14, Neely 5 2-2 12, Gallegos 2 3-4 7, Fenton 2 3-4 7, Ca. Smith 5 6-6 17, Paulson 2 2-3 6. Totals 19 23-27.

Score by quarters:

Dakota Ridge 16 15 9 12 -- 52

Legacy 12 13 9 29 -- 63

3-point field goals -- Dakota Ridge (2): Valerio, Navratil; Legacy (2): Lopez, Ca. Smith. Total fouls -- Dakota Ridge 19, Legacy 21. Fouled out -- Neely, Paulson. Technical fouls -- none.