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CU Buffs women’s basketball taking perfect record on road

Colorado visits Xavier on Friday

So far this season, the Colorado women’s basketball team has been through a variety of tests, and so far the Buffaloes have passed them all.

On Friday, the Buffs will take their perfect record on the road to Xavier for a new type of test.

BOULDER, CO - Dec. 3, 2019: ...
Jeremy Papasso/Staff Photographer
BOULDER, CO – Dec. 3, 2019: University of Colorado’s Quinessa Caylao-Do takes a shot during a NCAA game against Texas Southern University on Tuesday at the Coors Event Center in Boulder. (Photo by Jeremy Papasso/Staff Photographer)

“This will be the first sort of true road trip for us,” said head coach JR Payne, whose team was able to drive to previous road games at Wyoming and Colorado State. “So this is going to be fun. I mean, we actually really enjoy spending time together so it’s going to be kind of fun to get on an airplane and go play Xavier.”

Coming off a 74-50 rout of Texas Southern on Tuesday, the Buffs (7-0) will look to hand Xavier (1-5) its sixth consecutive defeat. To do so, the Buffs will have to manage the first true road trip with a young team. Five freshmen have never been on a trip with the Buffs, but junior Mya Hollingshed said this will be a good experience for the young team.

“Yes, because there’s a lot of things that go into road trips,” she said, “but I think that we have each other so we’re going to be fine. Going into a different gym, different crowd, different everything, we just have to stick together, play together and we’ll be fine.”

This season, the Buffs haven’t always been sharp, but they’ve played together and used their depth to win games.

Hollingshed leads the team with 13.8 points per game, but four different players have led the Buffs in scoring. Senior Quinessa Caylao-Do (10.6), sophomore Emma Clarke (10.6) and freshman Jaylyn Sherrod (10.0) are all averaging double figure points, and freshman Charlotte Whittaker (8.6) isn’t far behind.

The Buffs also have five players averaging at least four rebounds, led by Aubrey Knight’s 7.3 per game. They’ve outrebounded all seven opponents, five of them by at least 12 rebounds.

Xavier has struggled since a season-opening win against Utah, but Payne knows her team has to continue playing together – and bring its defense and rebounding – to come home from Cincinnati with a win.

“I know they beat Utah the first game of the year, so they are, I’m sure, a really good basketball team,” she said. “And, always playing on the road is difficult.”

CU women’s basketball preview: Xavier

MATCHUP: Colorado Buffaloes (7-0) at Xavier Musketeers (1-5)

GAME TIME: Friday, 5 p.m. MT, at Cintas Center in Cincinnati, Ohio

BROADCAST: Online – GoXavier.com/Watch. Radio – 630 AM

COACHES: Colorado – JR Payne, 4th season (51-50; 152-163 career). Xavier – Melanie Moore, 1st season (1-5).

LEADERS: Colorado  – Scoring: F Mya Hollingshed, Jr., 13.8 ppg; Rebounding: G Aubrey Knight, So., 7.3 rpg; Assists – G Jaylyn Sherrod, Fr., 5.1 apg. Xavier – Scoring: F A’riana Gray, Jr., 13.0 ppg; Rebounds: Gray, 9.0 rpg; Assists: G Aaliyah Dunham, Jr., 3.2 apg

NOTABLE: The Buffs defeated Texas Southern, 74-50, on Tuesday. Hollingshed had her first double-double of the season in the victory. … The Buffs are 7-0 for the first time since a 10-0 start to the 2016-17 season. Their seven-game win streak is the longest since the 10-game win streak in 2016-17. … CU sophomore Emma Clarke had a career-high 17 points against Texas Southern. She’s averaged 15.5 points and 7.5 rebounds the past two games. … Sherrod ranks fifth in the Pac-12 in free throw percentage (82.8) and sixth in assists (5.2 per game). … The Buffs are 11-3 in non-conference road games during Payne’s tenure, including 2-0 this season. … This will be the first-ever meeting between CU and Xavier in women’s basketball. … CU is 8-9 all-time against teams from the Big East Conference. … Xavier defeated Utah, 70-63, in its opener on Nov. 7 at home, but has lost five in a row since. … Xavier coach Melanie Moore spent the previous seven seasons as an assistant coach at Michigan. Prior to that, she had assistant coaching jobs at Princeton, Dayton, Indiana State and Siena.