The University of Colorado volleyball team overcame a major program hurdle last season by posting its first win in 15 tries against Stanford.

That was one of the highlights of the home slate for the Buffs a year ago, but they will have to wait for another day to celebrate their first road win against Stanford. In a top-25 showdown Friday night, No. 19 CU had its upset bid denied by the seventh-ranked Cardinal, with Stanford holding off the Buffaloes for a 3-1 win.

CU fell to 10-5 overall and 2-3 in the Pac-12 Conference. Stanford improved to 10-3 overall with a 4-1 mark in the league. The Buffs also fell to 3-3 against ranked opponents and still will be seeking their first win this season in a true road game when they finish the road trip Sunday at Cal.

Stanford took the early edge with a 25-17 win in the opening frame but the Buffs drew even with a 25-23 win in Set 2. However the momentum didn’t last, as the Cardinal used decisions of 25-19 and 25-18 to secure the win.

CU finished with a season-low hitting percentage of .155, recording 27 attack errors against just 18 for Stanford.

Alexa Smith led the Buffs with 11 kills and 13 digs but also recorded seven attack errors. Gabby Simpson’s team-record run of four consecutive triple-doubles ended, with the junior finishing with eight kills, 23 assists, and 14 digs. Junior Shadley Simpson posted a new career-high with 17 digs.

Freshman Kathryn Plummer paced Stanford with a team-leading 15 kills and 16 digs.

CU will seek its fifth consecutive win against Cal on Sunday.

Pat Rooney: or

No. 7 Stanford 3, No. 19 Colorado 1

At Maples Pavilion

Colorado (10-5, 2-3)


Stanford (10-3, 4-1)


Kills —
CU: Smith 11, Abu 9, Shadley 8, G. Simpson 8; Stanford: Plummer 15, Lutz 12.

Blocks —
CU: Abu 5, Pfefferle 5; Stanford: Alade 9, Ajanaku 7, Lutz 5, Plummer 5.

Assists —
CU: G. Simpson 23, McKibben 21; Stanford: Humphreys 25, Gray 23.

Aces —
CU: McKibben 1; Stanford: Ajanaku 2.

Digs —
CU: Shadley 17, G. Simpson 14, Smith 13, C. Simpson 10, McKibben 10; Stanford: Plummer 16, Hentz 15.