Indiana State held tough with Pac-12 foe Colorado in the first half, but the host Buffaloes pulled away in the second half for a 59-46 victory in women's college basketball Tuesday afternoon.
CeCe Mayo was the leader for the Blue and White as the junior racked up 10 points to go along with four steals. LeAndra Echi continued to be a force on the boards, pulling down 11 while also scoring seven points and dishing out four assists.
ISU also got a solid afternoon of production from Jasmine Elder and Jamyra McChristine, each of whom finished with nine points. McChristine added three boards and Elder brought down two.
As a team, the Sycamores shot 34 percent from the field on 17-for-50 shooting, while Colorado ended the game 24 of 64 from the floor for 35.7 percent. The Buffaloes were dominant on the glass, holding a 47-32 rebounding advantage. The Sycamores finished with seven assists.
Indiana State did manage to come away with eight steals in Boulder, but Colorado forced 24 turnovers and 12 steals.
The Sycamores wasted no time raising the defensive intensity at the start when Elder intercepted a pass on the first Colorado possession that led to a layin by McChristine. Echi came out on the following offensive possession and drained a triple to give ISU a quick five-point advantage.
Colorado answered the early Indiana State offensive flurry, however, and took an 11-10 lead into the first media timeout. Echi remained committed on the defensive end, recording two blocks by the end of the period and the Sycamores as a team forced five turnovers, but CU owned a 17-16 lead at the end of the first period.
Continuing her strong defensive play, Echi blocked her third shot to force a shot-clock violation with 8:08 left in the second quarter. Both teams struggled on offense initially, but a McChristine layin broke a four-minute scoring drought and then Elder drained her second 3-pointer to tie it up at 21.
The Buffaloes answered with a mini 4-0 run of their own to lead 25-21 at the second-quarter media timeout. Colorado began to pull away over the final three minutes, but Mayo got into the lane and took a beating, leading to a traditional three-point play, then Marie Hunter got to the line off of a fast break to keep ISU close at the half, 32-27.
Out of the break, ISU got on the board quickly as Echi sliced through the defense for an easy layup. However, a 2:55 scoring drought would follow later in the period that coincided with a 6-0 run for the Buffaloes, giving CU a 40-30 lead at the first media break. The Colorado run would end at 16-0 when Mayo knocked down a free throw with 1:24 left in the third. Indiana State trailed Colorado 50-31 heading into the final frame.
Facing a large deficit in the fourth frame, the Sycamores didn’t give up. With the lead locked in at around 19 for most of the first part of the fourth, a drawn charge by Caitlin Anderson ignited the ISU offense as Mayo and Hattie Westerfeld each broke free for a layup and then free throws by Adrian Folks would close the gap to 13, where it would stay.
The Buffaloes (6-0) were led by Emma Clarke with 14 points and nine boards.
The Sycamores (2-3) will play Friday as part of the Tiger Turkey Tip-Off in Stockton, Calif. They’ll open with the University of the Pacific at 7:30 p.m. EST.