Buffs’ Tournament Run Cut Short
LAS VEGAS — Luck was not the name of the game for the Colorado women's basketball team inside the Michelob ULTRA Arena on Wednesday night. The No. 6 seeded Buffaloes fell to No. 11 seeded Washington, 68-54, in the opening round of the Pac-12 Tournament.
Colorado (10-10) has not enjoyed its time at the Pac-12 Tournament since making the move to Sin City. The Buffs are now 0-for-3 in the tournament since making the move.
"I'm disappointed with the outcome of the ballgame clearly," head coach JR Payne commented. "I thought Washington outplayed us today. Our preparation had been really strong. Our team had been very focused. We were ready to play."
The Buffs were led by senior Mya Hollingshed and freshman Frida Formann. The CU duo both had 16 points on the night. Hollingshed also led the team in rebounds, finishing with eight.
CU struggled to hold on to the ball throughout the night. The Buffs turned the ball over 20 times on the night, leading directly to 29 points for the Huskies.
Washington (7-13) shot 11-for-20 from a 3-point distance, including a 6-for-11 fourth-quarter effort. The Huskies were led by Tameiya Sadler and Haley Van Dyke, each finishing with 18 points.
"I think Washington came in with nothing to lose," Payne continued. "They play very loose. I thought we played very tight. The looser they got, the tighter we got. That kind of snowballed in the wrong direction for us."
HOW IT HAPPENED: Washington jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead and kept the four-point advantage for the majority of the first four minutes. Formann's first 3-pointer of the night cut the UW lead to 8-7 and Hollingshed hit a jumper out of the media timeout to give CU its first lead, 9-8, of the night.
The rest of the quarter was all Buffs. CU finished the final five minutes making six shots in a row, capped off by Aubrey Knight's 3 at the buzzer to give Colorado a 19-12 lead after the first.
Colorado's lead hit eight points, 21-13, with Hollingshed getting out on the fast break. From there Washington chipped away at the CU lead, using a 10-2 run to tie the game at 23. The Huskies run continued, growing to 16-2, to give UW the 29-23 lead.
Washington shot 53.8 percent (7-for-13) in the second quarter and outscored CU 22-9 to take a 34-28 lead at the half.
CU erased the Washington lead with a 6-0 run to open the second half, tying the game at 34. The Buffs took a momentarily lead, 36-35, off a Tayanna Jones jumper but Washington struck back with a 3-pointer to go up 38-36 on the next possession.
The Buffs would be unable to regain the lead the rest of the night. Washington put together an 11-0 run following the Jones basket that was part of a larger 15-2 run, giving UW a 49-36 lead.
Colorado got within eight points in the early portion of the fourth quarter, but CU's seven turnovers in the quarter proved too much to overcome.
TURNING POINT: Sadler's 3-pointer handed the Huskies a 38-36 lead with 6:14 to play in the third quarter and CU wouldn't be able to get back on top. The Buffs went 0-for-6 from the field during the Washington run.
KEY STATISTICS: Washington scored 10 of its 15 fourth-quarter points off of Colorado turnovers. UW shot 6-for-11 in the final quarter.
NOTES: CU is now 6-10 all-time in the Pac-12 Tournament…the Buffs outrebounded Washington 27-21…CU had 12-second chance points compared to UW's 3…Hollingshed now has 1,223 career points (22nd all-time)…Formann hit four 3's, giving her 51 on the season the most since Alexis Robinson's 55 in 2018-19.
NEXT UP: The Buffs will wait to see what their postseason fate is.