The University of Colorado women’s basketball team concluded the regular season part of its 2017-18 season with a road trip to California for matchups with No. 10 UCLA on Thursday and USC on Sunday.
The Buffs fell in both contests, 73-67 vs. the Bruins and 65-53 to Southern California. Up next for Colorado will be the Pac-12 Tournament in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Buffs finish their regular season under second-year head coach JR Payne with a 14-15 overall mark. In conference play the Buffaloes were 5-13.
Despite a rally in the fourth quarter, Colorado was unable to bounce back at UCLA after the Bruins took a 24-13 lead after 10 minutes of play.
Although Colorado did outscore the Bruins in both the second and final quarters, the Buffaloes could not come back from the early deficit,
The loss spoiled an explosive performance by junior guard Alexis Robinson, whose 31 points tied a Buffs’ season-high recorded by fellow junior guard Kennedy Leonard against Utah on Feb. 1.
Robinson took 25 shots and made 11 of them, which included a 5-of-13 make rate from behind the three-point line.
The Buffs managed just shy of 39 percent of their shots and were collectively cold from deep, making just 7-of-27 attempts. The Bruins were better; UCLA shot better than 40 percent from behind the three-point line and from the floor in general in both halves of the game.
Leonard was second with nine points but had 11 assists, a team-high. Second behind Robinson in the points department was sophomore guard Quinessa Caylao-Do, who contributed 11 in the loss.
After falling at UCLA, the Buffs hoped to bounce back to a win vs. the Southern California Trojans. Despite a solid first quarter, the Buffaloes fell apart, largely in the third and fourth quarters, and fell in their season finale, 65-53.
Robinson was quiet in the loss; she added just six points after her lights out performance at UCLA. Leonard led the Buffaloes with 19 points on 6-of-14 shooting. Caylao-Do was second with nine points.
After failing to lead for any part of the game vs. UCLA, against the Trojans, Colorado built a 17-11 lead after one quarter of play. USC heated up a bit in the ensuing quarter, but the Buffs maintained a 27-25 advantage heading into halftime.
Leonard scored 15 of her 19 points in the second half, but a third quarter that saw USC score 24 points to Colorado’s 13 all but doomed the Buffs. No other Buffalo scored more than three points in the second half.
The opposite could not have been more the case for USC, as the Trojans had three players — Minyon Moore, Kristen Simon and Aliyah Mazyck — score at least 11.
The Trojans kept the pressure in the fourth quarter, outscoring CU 16-13. The Buffs managed to slide within 10 points of USC for a few isolated moments.
Colorado will next play in the Pac-12 Tournament which begins Thursday, March 1 in Las Vegas.
Contact CU Independent Head Sports Editor Justin Guerriero at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @TheHunrgy_Hippo.