Alexa Smith recorded her 10th double-double this season, but it wasn't enough as Colorado fell 25-14, 21-25, 25-22, 25-21 to No. 23 Oregon on Saturday night at Coors Events Center.
Smith had 14 of the Buffaloes' 50 kills and 14 digs against only one error on 32 attacks. The sophomore added an ace and two block assists. Junior Gabby Simpson chipped in 11 kills, 20 assists and 13 digs for her sixth career triple-double.
After the Ducks (14-5 overall, 6-3 Pac-12) cruised to a win in the opening set, the Buffs evened it in the second, pulling away after taking a 10-8 lead. Oregon answered in the third set with an 11-5 scoring run to start. Colorado pulled within two points of tying at 24-22 but could not finish the job. In the fourth set, the Buffs jumped out to a 6-2 lead only to watch the Ducks chip away. Oregon tied it at 21-all and scored the final four points to win the match.
With the loss the Buffs finished the first half of the Pac-12 schedule with a 4-6 record, 12-8 overall.
"Well they were very good. They put a lot of pressure on offensively with the speed and the tempo of what they do," said CU coach Jesse Mahoney, who was coming off earning his 100th career win at the D-I level with Friday's victory over Oregon State. "They run a lot of crossing patterns and make you defend the full 30 feet of the net. They were siding out very well. We ran into some lulls offensively. We hit the ball into the block. They had 17 blocks, which is concerning that we couldn't score from the middle or right side very well. Lex had a very nice match offensively, but outside of that we didn't have anyone who could generate points. I always felt that we were playing from behind."
Oregon hit .247 with 62 kills and 22 errors on 162 attacks. CU recorded 47 assists to UO's 59. The Ducks out-dug the Buffs 81-63. CU had 5.0 blocks while UO posted 17.0. Both teams had three aces each.
Colorado will travel to Los Angeles this week to take on UCLA on Oct. 28 and USC on Oct. 29.