NIWOT — Monday's win against a good Niwot Cougars club didn't come easy, but the Centaurus girls did what they needed to do in order to stay in the driver's seat for a Northern League title.

Riding a strong first quarter and finishing off the game with a solid fourth, the Warriors won 44-35 on the road. The win preserved the Warriors' narrow conference lead over second-place Greeley Central with just two games remaining in the regular season.

"Assuming Greeley Central won tonight, getting this win was big for us to stay on track for the league title," Centaurus coach Chris Mischke said. "We're not exactly an offensive machine but we've played well defensively, and we had to rely on that tonight."

Holding the Cougars (10-11, 5-7 Northern) to just 35 points in the game, the Warriors (16-5, 11-2 Northern) outscored the home team 12-6 in the first quarter and 15-9 in the fourth to separate themselves. With Brooke Jones (9.1 ppg) leaving the game early with an ankle injury, sophomore guard Helen Gover hit all four of the Warriors' 3-pointers and led the team with 14 points.

"That changed the tone of the game because she's our top scorer," Mischke said. "But some other girls really stepped up. We only had a two- or three-point lead for most of the game and some other girls really stepped up. We've played so many close games this season so I guess they're just trying to keep it interesting for me."


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The Warriors also got 12 points from junior Imani Licata, who kept the team in the lead by scoring 10 of her points in the first half. Sophomore guard Brooke Calvo scored 10 points, all in the fourth quarter while the Warriors pulled ahead for good.

Monday's win was the Warriors' sixth consecutive victory. For the Cougars, who were led by Sophie Grant's eight points, the loss was their third in their last four games. Despite their latest defeat, the Cougars remain in playoff contention and will look for a strong finish to what has been one of the program's better seasons in recent memory.

Niwot’s Shelby Stevens tries to get a shot by Riley Negrey of Centaurus during Monday’s contest. Centaurus won the road game to remain in
Niwot's Shelby Stevens tries to get a shot by Riley Negrey of Centaurus during Monday's contest. Centaurus won the road game to remain in control of the race for the Northern League title. Go to BoCoPreps.com for more photos. (Jeremy Papasso / Staff Photographer)

The Warriors will play at Silver Creek on Wednesday. Also on Wednesday, the Cougars will travel to face Northridge.

Brad Cochi: cochib@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/BradCochi

Centaurus 44, Niwot 35

At Niwot H.S.

CENTAURUS (16-5, 11-2)

Gover 5 0-0 14, Post 0 0-0 0, Jones 0 0-0 0, Goodard 0 0-0 0, Cano 4 2-4 10, Licata 5 2-3 12, Negrey 1 0-0 2, Anderson 3 0-0 6, Renney 0 0-0 0. Totals 18 4-7 44.

NIWOT (10-11, 5-7)

Colvin 2 1-1 6, Bhat 0 0-0 0 Grant 2 4-6 8, Gillett 2 0-2 4, Chen 2 0-0 5, Ricciardello 0 2-2 2, Gonzales 2 2-2 6, Stevens 0 2-2 2, Martinez 1 0-0 2. Totals 11 11-15 35.

Score by quarters:

Centaurus 12 8 9 15 — 44

Niwot 6 11 9 9 — 35

3-point field goals — Centaurus (4): Gover 4; Niwot (2): Colvin, Chen. Total fouls — Centaurus 15, Niwot 12.