BOULDER, Colo. (AP) — This was Haley Jones’ take on playing a career-high 50 minutes at elevation: “It was fun,” the Stanford senior guard said.
Easy to see why.
Jones scored 13 of her 23 points over the two overtime periods and the third-ranked Cardinal held off No. 21 Colorado 73-62 on Thursday night.
Jones also had 11 rebounds and seven assists for the Cardinal (27-3, 15-2 Pac-12), who remain on top of the conference standings with one game left on their regular season schedule. Stanford was picked to win the Pac-12 in the preseason poll.
Lauren Betts, who grew up in Colorado, sent the game into double overtime by hitting one of two free throws with 3.8 seconds remaining. She finished with 14 points.
Jones took control in overtime No. 2, helping the Cardinal outscore Colorado by a 13-2 margin. It was the first double OT game for Stanford since 2017.
“Feels great. A ‘W’ is a ‘W’ in my opinion, even though we have lots of things to work on,” Jones said. “We learned a lot, but it also proves that we’re very gritty and a tough team.”
Jaylyn Sherrod led Colorado (21-7, 12-5) with 19 points, including the game-tying basket with just under 30 seconds remaining in regulation. She briefly left the game in the fourth after appearing to turn her ankle. The Buffaloes, who trailed by as many as eight in the fourth, were missing their third-leading scorer, Frida Formann, due to an illness.
“What anyone who watched this game saw on full display wasn’t a bunch of superstars. It was a team that’s tough, and gritty, and fights and scraps for every single possession. That’s who we are,” said Colorado coach JR Payne, whose team shot 28.8% from the floor. “It really hurts to lose a game like this to Stanford, but incredibly proud of how we played.”
The usually sure-shooting Cardinal missed their opening 15 shots and trailed by as many as 14 points in the first half. They entered on short rest after beating UCLA on Monday.
The games between the Buffaloes and Cardinal are typically back-and-forth. Entering Thursday, six of the last last 10 were decided by single digits, including two that went into overtime. This was another thriller.
“We kind of made it exciting for TV,” Cardinal coach Tara VanDerveer said. “That’s a tournament team. Colorado has had a great season. … We can both get better because of a game like this.”
Cameron Brink fouled out in overtime after scoring eight points. Her string of reaching double figures ended at 21 straight games.
Stanford didn’t score its first basket of the game until Brooke Demetre hit a 3-pointer with 12 seconds remaining in the opening quarter. But Colorado could only open up a 13-5 advantage.
“They’re really hard to score against because they’re so big at every position,” Payne said. “So that makes it challenging.”
Stanford: Since losing to No. 1 South Carolina in OT on Nov. 20, the Cardinal have now won 10 straight over ranked teams.
Colorado: The Buffaloes remain on three wins over ranked teams this season. The last time they knocked off four in the same season was 2001-02.
THIS & THAT
Colorado center Quay Miller 17 points. … Stanford outrebounded Colorado by a 53-42 margin. … Stanford guard Hannah Jump had 14.
HALL OF HONOR
Longtime Colorado women’s basketball coach and administrator Ceal Barry will be inducted into the Pac-12 Hall of Honor. The 2023 class marks the first all-female class to be enshrined in the league’s Hall of Honor. It’s in recognition of the 50th anniversary of Title IX.
Stanford: Close out the regular season Saturday at No. 8 Utah.
Colorado: Host California on Saturday.
AP women’s college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/womens-college-basketball and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-womens-college-basketball-poll and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25