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Women’s basketball: CU Buffs routed by No. 2 Oregon

Colorado handed first loss of season

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EUGENE, Ore. – Colorado’s undefeated run in women’s basketball came to a crashing halt on Friday night.

Facing two-time defending Pac-12 champion and No. 2-ranked Oregon, the Buffaloes fell behind early and never recovered in a 104-46 loss at Matthew Knight Arena.

Coming into the night, the Buffs (12-1, 1-1 Pac-12) were off to their best start since the 2011-12 season, but had yet to face a team like the Ducks (11-1), who are among the favorites to win the national title this season.

Oregon dominated throughout the night and hit 58 percent of its shots, while holding the Buffs to 26.7 percent. The Ducks also converted 21 CU turnovers into 27 points and outscored the Buffs 56-16 in the paint.

“We’re capable of better basketball,” CU head coach JR Payne said after the game on 630-AM KHOW radio. “That’s the part I’m disappointed with. We have to play better basketball in this conference, and we will.”

Reigning national player of the year Sabrina Ionescu finished with 21 points, seven assists and six rebounds before sitting out the fourth quarter for the Ducks. Forward Ruthy Hebard had 21 points and five rebounds, while Satou Sabally added 17 points for the Ducks.

The Buffs were led by freshman Jaylyn Sherrod and sophomore Aubrey Knight scoring nine points each.

Sherrod knocked down a 3-pointer just 23 seconds into the game to get the Buffs off to a good start. The Buffs then missed 11 of their next 12 shots as Oregon opened up a 20-5 lead.

By halftime, the Ducks led 51-22 and stretched the lead in the second half. Oregon led by as much as 61 points, late in the fourth quarter.

The final result was nearly identical to the lone meeting between these teams last season, a 102-43 Ducks victory in Eugene on Feb. 3, 2019.

“You have to learn from it and get better in the next day and a half,” said Payne, who will take her team to Corvallis, Ore., on Sunday to face third-ranked Oregon State.

CU was one of seven undefeated teams in the country when the game began, but have to pick up the pieces before facing one of the six remaining unbeatens. Oregon State improved to 13-0 with a 77-48 win against Utah on Friday.

“The Pac-12 is a hard conference and there are a lot of talented teams and there’s no time for us to hang our heads,” senior Quinessa Caylao-Do said on KHOW.

Notable

CU’s 12-0 start matched the second-best in program history. Only the 1992-93 team had a better start, at 15-0. … CU has lost four in a row to the Ducks. … Ionescu recorded the 900th assist of her career, extending her Pac-12 women’s record. She’s closing in on the most assists by any Pac-12 player. Former Oregon State men’s star Gary Payton holds that mark, with 938. … Hebard passed the 2,000-point mark for her Oregon career.

Fast break

What went right: Not much. The Buffs had a rough night all-around.

What went wrong: The Buffs made just 26.7 percent of their shots from the floor, 47.6  percent of their free throws and racked up 21 turnovers. Defensively, they couldn’t stop the Ducks, who hit 58 percent of their shots.

Star of the game: Aubrey Knight. She scored nine points and had three rebounds for the Buffs.

What’s next: On Sunday, the Buffs visit No. 3 Oregon State.

No. 2 Oregon 104, Colorado 46

COLORADO (12-1, 1-1 Pac-12)

Sherrod 2-6 3-10 9, Clarke 1-6 0-0 2, Hollingshed 3-8 1-1 7, Knight 4-8 0-0 9, Whittaker 2-8 1-2 5, Caylao-Do 0-1 4-6 4, Finau 1-3 1-2 4, Kulinska 0-2 0-0 0, Smith 0-1 0-0 0, Jank 2-11 0-0 4, Volcy 0-0 0-0 0, Tuitele 1-6 0-0 2. Totals 16-60 10-21 46.

OREGON (11-1, 1-0)

Sabally 5-11 7-9 17, Ionescu 9-14 1-1 21, Boley 2-5 0-0 5, Moore 3-8 1-1 7, Hebard 9-11 3-4 21, Chavez 3-4 1-2 10, Shelley 4-7 0-1 10, Winterburn 3-5 2-2 8, Cochrane 0-1 1-2 1, Giomi 2-3 0-0 4. Totals 40-69 16-22 104.

Colorado         11        11        13        11        –           46

Oregon            26        25        31        22        –           104

3-point field goals – Colorado 4-24 (Sherrod 2-3, Knight 1-3, Finau 1-2, Clarke 0-5, Hollingshed 0-3, Kulinska 0-2, Jank 0-2, Tuitele 0-2, Whittaker 0-1, Caylao-Do 0-1), Oregon 8-17 (Chavez 3-4, Ionescu 2-3, Shelley 2-3, Boley 1-3, Sabally 0-3, Moore 0-1). Rebounds – Colorado 38 (Whittaker 5), Oregon 40 (Ionescu 6). Assists – Colorado 10 (Knight, Whittaker, Kulinska 2), Oregon 26 (Ionescu 7). Steals – Colorado 4 (Volcy 3), Oregon 10 (Sabally, Giomi 3). Turnovers – Colorado 21, Oregon 6. Total fouls – Colorado 20, Oregon 19. Fouled out – None. Technicals – Hollingshed, Hebard, Oregon bench. A – 10,483.

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