McFarland Leads CU To Senior Night Win
BOULDER – Jackie McFarland scored a game-high 25 points and grabbed 14 rebounds to lead Colorado to a 63-47 Big 12 Conference win over Missouri on Senior Night at the Coors Events Center.
With the win Colorado improves to 16-13 overall and finishes ninth in the regular season Big 12 standings at 5-11. The Buffaloes will play No. 8 Iowa State, which lost to Nebraska 55-45 Wednesday night, in the first round of the 2008 Big 12 Championship on Tuesday, March 11, at 11 a.m. MST at the Municipal Auditorium in Kansas City.
McFarland carried the load for the Buffaloes on an off night offensively for both teams. She was 6-of-11 from the field and made all 12 free throw attempts. As a team the Buffs shot just 34.5 percent overall (19-of-55), but Missouri had an even harder time, making just 25 percent from the floor (15-of-59).
Colorado led by eight at halftime (29-21), but saw the lead dwindle to just two as the Buffaloes could only muster two field goals – both by McFarland – and two free throws in the first 10:57 of the second half. McFarland scored on a put-back of a Bianca Smith miss with 9:02 remaining in the game that jump started a 21-6 CU run that allowed the Buffaloes to pull away.
Playing in her final regular season home game, McFarland became the first player in team history to record 500 points in three different seasons. She notched her 45th career double-double and in the process became the third player in team history to reach 1,000 career rebounds.
CU's inside presence was crucial, because the outside game struggled the entire night. The Buffs hit just 2-of-16 from 3-point range, tying a season low for 3-pointers made in a game. McFarland's performance was complimented well by junior Kara Richards who had eight points and a season-high 11 rebounds. Freshman Brittany Spears added 10 points, five rebounds and three assists.
"I'm not sure why the (offensive) execution wasn't there tonight," CU head coach Kathy McConnell-Miller said. "Maybe the substitutions didn't allow us to get into a flow, but we had some good individual performances tonight. Kara and Jackie both did a good job and our interior game was good tonight."
Colorado dominated the boards holding a 51-37 edge over the Tigers who finish last in the Big 12 standings at 2-14, 9-20 overall.
"We rebounded the ball well, but when you miss as many shots as we did, you should get some rebounds," McConnell-Miller said. "It was a pretty poor offensive night from our execution to our finishes. I give credit to Missouri, they played good defense and got inside Bianca (Smith), they banged Spears, but they didn't double-team Jackie and she got some good looks and took advantage."
Missouri was led by Jessra Johnson who had 24 points and 11 rebounds. MU's leading scorer Alyssa Hollins pitched in 16.