Huskies Suffer First Loss Of The Year To Colorado, 78-64

Dec. 9, 2003

BOULDER, Colo. - Seventeenth-ranked Colorado handed Washington women's basketball its first loss of the season, 78-64, at the Coors Events Center in Boulder, Colo., Tuesday evening.

The senior tandem of Giuliana Mendiola and Andrea Lalum led the Huskies (5-1) with 20 and 19 points, respectively, but it wasn't enough as the Buffs (7-1) dominated the boards on both ends of the floor. For the first time this season, Washington was outrebounded, trailing Colorado by a 44-30 margin on the boards.

Colorado held Washington to just 64 points, well off its average of a Pac-10 leading 80.8 per game. The Huskies' 31 first-half points was also a season-low and marked the first time this year UW trailed at the intermission.

'I think the pressure defense was right there,' UW head coach June Daugherty said. 'They (Colorado) disrupted us offensively and took us out of our comfort zone. Credit their defense. The first half we were not getting any second chance shots, and that is something that we have been good at so far.'

The loss snapped a five-game winning streak for Washington, who had opened the year on a 5-0 run, its best start since a 10-0 start to the 1997-98 season. The loss also comes to the Huskies' first ranked opponent on the year, as UW falls to 35-88 all-time against Top-25 teams.

Senior center Tera Bjorklund led Colorado with a game-high 26 points and 11 rebounds. She was one of two Buffaloes to record double-doubles, joined by Amber Metoyer who came off the bench with 16 points and 12 rebounds.

In addition to Mendiola and Lalum, senior Gioconda Mendiola scored in double-figures with 11 points, including a career-high three three-pointers. Lalum and freshman Breanne Watson led the team with six rebounds each.

'They (Colorado) are one heck of a team,' Giuliana Mendiola said. 'We had to work hard for every basket and I don't think we made the adjustments early on, but we kept fighting. I just think it was a great game in general. I think we lost on the rebounding. Colorado is very physical and they have a lot of weapons and good shooters. We knew that coming into the game, but they just stuck it to us.'

Colorado got off to an early start with a bucket from Bjorklund, which was answered by a three-point basket from Watson. That one-point lead was the only lead the Huskies would own for the remainder of the game. The Buffs held as much as a 14-point lead with just under a minute to play in the first half. Lalum hit a three-pointer with 39 seconds to cut the CU advantage to 11 at halftime.

Both teams traded baskets in the opening minutes of the second-frame, but an 8-0 Colorado run extended the Buffs lead to 20. The largest Husky deficit of the game was 23 points with just over six minutes left.

The Huskies will have a week off for finals, and return to Seattle for back-to-back home games versus Denver (Tues., Dec. 16, at 7 p.m.) and No. 4 Texas Tech (Fri., Dec. 19, at 7:30 p.m.).

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