Buffs Smash Utah By 30
BOULDER – Noon tip-off might become the preferred start time for JR Payne and the Colorado women's basketball team. CU enjoyed the afternoon affair, sending Utah packing with an 80-50 win inside the CU Events Center.
The 30-point win for the Buffs was the largest Pac-12 win for Colorado dating back to Jan. 20, 2013, when CU defeated Arizona by 43, 79-36.
Colorado (3-3, 1-2 Pac-12) had four players finish in double figures on Monday. Sophomore Jaylyn Sherrod and freshman Frida Formann each picked up career-highs in scoring for the second consecutive game. Sherrod led all payers with 24 points, going 9-for-15 from the field. Formann had her best 3-point shooting game of her young career, starting 5-of-5 from long distance and finishing with 17 points. Senior Mya Hollingshed picked up her fourth double-double of the season, totaling 10 points and a game-high 12 rebounds. Sophomore Peanut Tuitele rounded out the Buffs' top-scorers with 10 points.
Utah (2-2, 1-2 Pac-12) who hit 16 3-pointers in the last meeting between the two schools in Boulder, shot just 5-for-20 from behind the 3-point line. The Utes failed to get a player into double figures, led by Kemery Martin's nine points off the bench.
The Buffs, who lead the Pac-12 in steals per game, forced 25 Utah turnovers. Colorado made the Utes pay for their mistakes, scoring a season-high 38 points off turnovers.
HOW IT HAPPENED: Colorado got to work right from the start, getting early free-throws from Aubrey Knight to open the day's scoring. Formann hit an open 3-pointer to cap a 7-0 run to start for the Buffs in the opening three minutes. CU's run increased to 13-3, getting points from Peanut Tuitele and Hollingshed. Formann's second 3 of the quarter gave CU an 11-point advantage (16-5) with under four minutes to go in the quarter. CU shot 53.8 percent in the quarter and limited Utah to just nine points in the frame.
Formann hit her third 3 of the first half to get started in the second, extending CU's lead to 23-12. Tuitele hit an open shot from the top of the arc starting a 5-for-5 shooting streak that built an 18-point Colorado lead, 30-12. The Buffs shot 53.3 percent in the second quarter and outscored Utah 22-16 to take a 42-25 lead at the break.
Third-quarter production slowed to a crawl for both teams early in the quarter. CU got a quick basket from Sherrod to open up a 44-25 lead. The Buffs then went 0-for its next-7, going nearly four minutes without points. CU's defense held tough during the stretch, holding Utah to an 0-for-5 showing in the same stretch of play. Formann broke the cold streak with back-to-back 3's to put the Buffs up 52-31 with just over three minutes to play in the quarter.
Colorado went just 5-for-16 in the third but held Utah to just three field goals in the period and 0-for-6 from 3-point range.
CU took a 24-point lead into the fourth quarter and never let Utah get within 22 points the rest of the day. Lesila Finau and Sherrod each totaled seven points in the quarter, helping CU close the frame with a game-high 76.9 field-goal percentage (10-13). Finau put the finishing touches on the board with free-throws in the final minute, hitting the 30-point spread.
KEY STAT: CU got after Utah early, holding the Utes to just nine points in the first quarter. The Buffs scored more points off of CU turnovers in the first quarter than Utah totaled as a team. Colorado forced nine Utah turnovers in the first 10 minutes, leading directly to 10 CU points.
QUOTABLE: "We just talked to our team about having a really aggressive mindset. We said everything you do on the court tonight needs to be aggressive. From zoning to rotating. That showed up in the stat sheet and certainly impacted our success tonight." -JR Payne
NOTES: Colorado evens the all-time series against Utah at 19 games apiece…The Buffs are now 3-0 on their home court this season…All three of CU's wins this season have been by more than 25 points (27, 42, 30)…Colorado never trailed and led for 39:36…CU's has hit 15 3FGs in its last two games…The Buffs shot 76.5 percent from the free-throw line (13-17), their best showing since going 15-for-17 (88.2) at UCLA last season...Colorado's 15 points in the third quarter is the most its scored in Pac-12 play this season…Hollingshed now has 978 career points.
NEXT UP: The Buffs remain at home this weekend, hosting No. 6 Arizona on Friday (5 p.m. MT) and Arizona State on Sunday (2 p.m. MT). Both games will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Network.