Women’s basketball: Stanford hands CU Buffs heartbreaking defeat – The Denver Post

Snapshot: Stanford 73, CU Buffs women 62 (2 OT)

Turning point: Stanford opened the second overtime with a 5-0 run that forced the Buffs to play catch-up and they never could recover from that initial surge.

Buff of the game: Tayanna Jones. She didn’t lead the Buffs in many categories but had her best game in weeks, with nine points, seven rebounds, three blocks and played good defense most of the afternoon.

What’s next?: The Buffs host California in the regular season finale on Saturday at noon MT at the CU Events Center.

Red, watery eyes from Quay Miller and Jaylyn Sherrod expressed the hurt and disappointment of a difficult defeat.

Without one of its best players and on a day when shots dropped infrequently, the 21st-ranked Colorado women’s basketball team used every ounce of heart and energy to try to score an upset of third-ranked Stanford on Thursday.

That made a 73-62 double-overtime loss at the CU Events Center tough to swallow.

“Right now, I guess for me, it just hurts because, I mean, I came here so I could compete with teams like Stanford,” said CU center Quay Miller, who scored 17 points and pulled down eight rebounds. “This is probably the closest I’ve been to them in my whole college career, so just being able to play with this team and to compete and to not have it come out the way we want to, it’s just like … aww, because you want it so bad.”

In addition to Miller, Jaylyn Sherrod had 19 points and four assists and Aaronette Vonleh added 11 points and eight rebounds to lead the Buffs (21-7, 12-5 Pac-12), but they were dominated in the second overtime.

Stanford (27-3, 15-2) opened the second overtime with a 5-0 run and outscored the Buffs 13-2 in the frame. CU didn’t hit a field goal in the final 5 minutes, 45 seconds.

“Honestly, I just think we weren’t hitting shots and they were,” Sherrod said. “That’s pretty much all we can really say to that one.”

CU’s third-leading scorer, Frida Formann, missed the game because of an illness, and the Buffs sorely missed her ability to hit shots. As a team, the Buffs went 19-for-66 (28.8%) from the floor, the same numbers as their loss at Stanford on Jan. 22.

Despite the rough day, the Buffs stormed to a 19-5 lead early in the second quarter. Tayanna Jones had all nine of her points in that initial run, as CU took advantage of a horrendous start by the Cardinal, who missed 20 of their first 21 shots.

Stanford got its offense going late in the second quarter, however, and then dominated the third quarter. Freshman Lauren Betts, from Grandview High School in Aurora, scored seven straight points to close the third and give the Cardinal a six-point lead.

Stanford’s lead reached eight early in the fourth before Sherrod scored five straight, including a 3-pointer, to spark the Buffs. Sherrod missed her other six 3-point attempts.

“It wasn’t a good shooting night and I kind of started just second-guessing myself,” Sherrod said. “Quay was really a good leader and a good teammate and just telling me to keep shooting it.”

Sherrod had seven points in the fourth quarter and six more in the first overtime. It was the two she didn’t score that hurt, though.

With CU up 60-59, Sherrod was fouled with 6.2 seconds left in the first overtime. She missed both free throws, however. Betts went 1-for-2 on the other end with 3.8 seconds left to force a second overtime.

In addition to those misses, CU was dominated on the boards in key spots throughout the final stretch.

“In all reality, there were some plays that happened that were deflating and no matter how much you’re locked in and focused, you can’t help but feel disappointed after the first overtime,” Payne said. “We weren’t hanging our heads or anything like that, but, yeah, I mean, of course there were some things that I think were disappointing and that’s hard to continue to rally back from.”

Ultimately, it was a heartbreaking missed opportunity for the Buffs, but not a devastating defeat. They’ll look to bounce back Saturday against California in the regular season finale.

“What anyone who watched this game saw on full display wasn’t a bunch of superstars; it was a team that’s tough and gritty and fights and scraps for every single possession they have,” Payne said. “And that’s who we are. I’m unbelievably proud of our ability to dig in with less numbers, people playing tons of minutes, make big plays offensively and defensively.

“We’ve been saying all year, we know we’re pretty good. So this game, it really hurts to lose a game like this to Stanford, but incredibly proud of how we played and how we competed.”

No. 3 Stanford 73, No. 21 Colorado 62

STANFORD (27-3, 15-2 Pac-12)

Lepolo 0-2 0-0 0, Brink 4-9 0-0 8, H. Jones 7-19 9-13 23, Jump 5-9 0-0 14, Iriafen 1-4 0-2 2, Emma-Nnopu 0-2 0-0 0, Belibi 3-6 0-2 6, Prechtel 0-2 0-0 0, Nivar 0-1 0-0 0, Bosgana 1-1 0-0 3, Demetre 1-8 0-0 3, Betts 5-9 4-5 14. Totals 27-72 13-22 73.

COLORADO (21-7, 12-5 Pac-12)

Sherrod 6-17 6-10 19, T. Jones 4-6 0-0 9, Sadler 0-6 0-0 0, Miller 3-17 11-12 17, Vonleh 4-11 3-4 11, Wetta 1-7 1-2 3, Wynn 1-1 0-0 3, McLeod 0-1 0-0 0, Whittaker 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 19-66 21-28 62.

Stanford                      5          13        20        10        10        13        –           73

Colorado                     13        11        8          16        12        2          –           62

3-point field goals – Stanford 6-18 (Jump 4-6, Demetre 1-7, Bosgana 1-1, Lepolo 0-1, Jones 0-1, Prechtel 0-1, Nivar 0-1), Colorado 3-19 (Sherrod 1-7, Jones 1-3, Wynn 1-1, Miller 0-5, Wetta 0-2, Sadler 0-1). Rebounds – Stanford 53 (Jones 11), Colorado 42 (Miller, Vonleh 8). Assists – Stanford 16 (Jones 7), Colorado 11 (Sherrod 4). Steals – Stanford 6 (Jones 3), Colorado 10 (Wetta 4). Turnovers – Stanford 18, Colorado 13. Total fouls – Stanford 24, Colorado 27. Fouled out – Brink, T. Jones. A – 2,963.

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