Play in April.

If it's not the new mantra of the Colorado women's basketball team, it should be.

The Buffs are just two wins away from lacing them up in April for the second time in history after beating Southern Utah 79-68 Saturday at the Coors Events Center in the second round of the WNIT.

Colorado advanced to the semifinals of the 2008 WNIT and hosted a game April 2 that year against Marquette that it lost. The Buffs have a realistic chance of matching that accomplishment and maybe even beating it if they continue to play as well as a team as they did against the Thunderbirds.

It was the second time this season CU beat Southern Utah. The first came back in late December in a game also played in Boulder.

Saturday's game started ugly with both teams struggling to put the ball in the basket. With 7 minutes, 24 seconds left in the first half Southern Utah had two made field goals and nine turnovers and Colorado had three made field goals and eight turnovers.

Fortunately for everyone in the stands, there were points being scored at the foul line.

CU led 28-21 at halftime and extended the lead into double digits with an 8-0 run to start the second half. Sophomore Arielle Roberson led the surge scoring her first eight points of the game in the first 6 minutes of the second half helping CU establish its largest lead of 19 points.


Roberson finished the game with 15 points and 11 rebounds, leading the Buffs in both categories. Point guard Lexy Kresl also played well 12 points, six rebounds and four assists.

SUU senior center Carli Moreland, a product of Broomfield High School, did her best to keep the Thunderbirds in it and extend the season and her career. Moreland scored 17 points with two rebounds. She was the only SUU player to score in the final 7 minutes of the first half running off a string of 11 points.

Moreland eventually fouled out, receiving a nice ovation from family and friends seated behind the visitor's bench.

CU's senior center, Rachel Hargis, wasn't bad either. She tied a career high with 12 points and set a new CU school record for games played at 133. The old record of 132 was held by Erin Scholz (1994-97).

Hargis also had one of the Buffs' 14 blocked shots, the second most blocked shots in a game in CU history. Roberson led the Buffs with four, her career best. Zoe Beard-Fails came off the bench to block three.

The Thunderbirds never stopped playing hard cutting the lead to 10 on several occasions in the final minutes and nine briefly in the final seconds.

Colorado moves on to the third round where it will play the winner of a game Monday night between Saint Mary's and UTEP. CU's next game will be played either Wednesday, Thursday or Friday next week at a site to be determined.

Contact Writer Kyle Ringo at or