Texas Tech Downs Buffs 66-60
BOULDER- Texas Tech used a 14-0 run midway through the second half to defeat Colorado 66-60 Wednesday night at the Coors Events/Conference Center.
CU falls to 9-9, 1-5 in the Big 12, while TTU snaps a two-game losing streak and advances to 12-7, 3-3 Big 12.
Sophomore Brittany Spears led the Buffs with 26 points—her second-highest point total this season and a personal best for a Big 12 game. Freshman Alyssa Fressle and senior Kara Richards each had 13.
The first half was highlighted by runs for both teams. The Buffs started out on top jumping ahead to a 12-2 lead less than five minutes into the game.
Spears got the Buffs going by putting up Colorado's first eight points. She knocked down her first of four 3-pointers of the night, tying a career high. Then, 22 just seconds later, she stole the ball in the backcourt from Lady Raider Jordan Murphree and drove down the court for a layup. Spears capped her run off with another trey.
Smith followed Spears's lead and recorded a steal and driving layup of her own. Fressle followed with a jumper, and the Buffs found themselves on top by 10—their biggest lead of the game—at the 15:31 mark.
But CU's lead didn't last for long as Texas Tech took over for the next 10 minutes, pulling ahead 25-19 and outscoring the Buffs 23-7 during that time.
Colorado stormed back and shut Texas Tech down for the next 2:09 as they put up eight straight points. Richards swooshed her two free throws after being fouled by Kierra Mallard. Smith knocked down a shot from behind the 3-point arc and sophomore Kelly Jo Mullaney capped the run with a driving layup down the baseline as the shot clock expired and sank a free throw on the next possession after being fouled by Murphree to put the Buffs up by two with 1:36 remaining.
Despite the Buffs' comeback, Texas Tech went into halftime on top by three (30-27) after Mallard scored on a layup and senior Maria Moore knocked down a 3-pointer with 34 seconds remaining.
Colorado and Texas Tech were even in the first part of the second half. In fact they were tied 40-40 after Fressle hit a jumper at the 13:45 mark. But that's when Texas Tech stepped up and went on a 14-0 run over the next four minutes. They held their biggest lead (54-40) with 9:01 remaining in the game.
CU Coach Kathy McConnell-Miller explained how her team fell behind so quick: "We tried to go too much one-on-one there. We had three consecutive turnovers that led to easy buckets for them, and gave them momentum," she said. "I thought we were soft and tentative and they went right at us."
The Buffaloes will put tonight's loss behind them and focus on their next match-up against conference rival Nebraska. Colorado hosts Nebraska on Saturday Jan. 31 at 1 p.m. at the Coors Events/Conference Center. The game will be televised nationally on FSN.