Spears' Double-Double Not Enough for Kansas
LAWRENCE, Kan. — Freshman Brittany Spears had 21 points, 12 rebounds and five blocks but Kansas used a 2-to-1 advantage at the foul line to claim a 70-59 win in a Big 12 Conference game Wednesday evening at Allen Fieldhouse.
Colorado's record falls to 13-11 and 2-9 in the Big 12.
Spears, which registered her fourth double-double of the season, hit 7-of-14 from the floor tied a career-high in despite playing the entire second half with gauze plugging both nostrils due to bleeding after a collision with a Kansas defender late in the first half.
Although the reigning Big 12 Rookie of the Week had a stellar evening with her third 20-point performance of the season, Kansas wing Danielle McCray matched the CU freshman's effort scoring a game-high 24 points, including 8-of-11 from the free-throw line, and 10 rebounds.
Leading 39-38 with 18:08 remaining Kansas used a 10-2 run to solidify its advantage and then kept the Buffaloes at bay by getting to the foul line. The Jayhawks hit 17-of-25 second half free throws and their 32 attempts for the game were the most against the Buffaloes this season. Colorado made 11-of-15 free throw opportunities.
Kansas, which scored only 41 points during CU’s 18-point win in Boulder on Jan. 22, nearly matched that total in the first half as both teams were red hot early on. Each team made eight of its first 12 shots and the lead changed hand eight times in the first 10 minutes before Kansas used a 9-0 run to take a 38-31 halftime lead.
Colorado made 14-of-28 first half field goals as the Buffs enjoyed their best first half percentage of the Big 12 season. Spears had nine points on 4-of-4 from the field to lead CU in the first half, and the Buffs had early support from their bench. Whitney Houston had six points on 3-of-5 shooting and Kara Richards, who had just six points against Big 12 competition this season, had five points and three rebounds in the first 20 minutes.
Despite CU’s early success, Kansas did better making 58 percent (15-of-26) receiving 14 points from McCray and 10 from Krysten Boogaard.
Jackie McFarland finished with 13 points for the Buffaloes.
Colorado returns home to host Texas on Saturday, Feb. 16, at 7 p.m. at the Coors Events/Conference Center.