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Buffs Drop First Of The Season

Nov 24, 2008

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va - Three Virginia players registered double-doubles in a 77-43 win over Colorado Monday night at John Paul Jones Arena in Charlottesville, Va.


The Buffaloes fall to 2-1 while No. 16/11 ranked Cavaliers improve to 3-1.


Whitny Edwards had 14 points and 11 rebounds off the bench in a game where neither team shot particularly well but Virginia held a 68-43 advantage on the boards including 26 on the offensive end which led to 19 second-chance points. Virginia center Aisha Mohammed had 10 points and a game-high 14 rebounds while All-ACC forward Monica Wright had 11 points and 10 rebounds. Virginia's 68 rebounds is a CU school record for an opponent.


Foul trouble and Virginia's pressure defense took Colorado out of its game early. CU's leading scorer Brittany Spears, who had scored 23 and 24 points in her first two games respectively, played just seven minutes in the first half with three early fouls and was held without a field goal (0-for-6) and scored just four points. Junior guard Bianca Smith made just one of 13 3-point field goal attempts and finished the game with seven points and seven rebounds.


Colorado was cold from the field in the first half as the Buffaloes made just one of their first nine shots of the game and 26 percent overall. Virginia's defense made it hard for Colorado to get in rhythm as most of CU's first half shots were highly contested by the Cavalier defense and taken early in the possession.


Virginia led by as much as 14 in the first half, but was unable to widen its lead due to 14 first half turnovers and cold shooting that was barely better than Colorado.  The Cavaliers made just two baskets in the final 10 minutes of the half and shot just 29 percent (10-of-34) for the period.


The Buffaloes cut the halftime lead down to 10 (30-20) with two quick buckets as the clock ran down. Alyssa Fressle scored on a runner with 24 seconds left and with Virginia trying to run clock down to take the final shot, Hannah Skildum picked the pocket of Wright and dished off to Mullaney who scored on a layup with just one second left.


Mullaney led Colorado with 10 points and five rebounds.


Fressle hit a 3-pointer and Spears sank a pair of free throws early in the second half as Colorado trimmed the Virginia lead to eight at 33-25, but the Cavaliers blew open the game with a 23-5 run.


"(Virginia) is clearly a good team with a lot of weapons," CU head coach Kathy McConnell-Miller said. "They focused on taking us out of the things we wanted to do. They had good ball pressure and put us back on our heels. They were aggressive, they denied us and made us do things we weren't comfortable doing."


Fressle finished with nine points, two assists and two steals. Skildum tied a career high with seven rebounds off the bench. Senior Kara Richards had seven points, four rebounds, two blocks and two steals.


Colorado returns home to host the 22nd Annual Coors Classic as Drexel, Minnesota and Massachusetts join the Buffaloes at the Coors Events Center, Friday-Saturday, Nov. 28-29. Friday's matchups feature Drexel against Minnesota at 5 p.m. while the Buffaloes play UMass at 7:30 p.m. Saturday's consolation game is slated for 5 p.m. and the championship game at 7:30 p.m.