Arizona women's basketball blow leads against Utah and Colorado
Arizona women’s basketball’s (5-22, 1-15 Pac-12 Conference) second half collapses doomed the Wildcats to two more loses over the weekend.
In its 61-56 overtime loss Sunday to Colorado (15-12, 11-5), Arizona started hot by hitting 13 of its first 18 shots and leading 30-12 with 8:08 remaining.
Colorado only hit four of its first 15 shots.
Arizona took advantage of the Buffaloes’ 12 turnovers by taking a 39-23 lead at halftime with 16 points off the turnovers.
Rebecca Marie Sasnett / The Daily Wildcat Senior Kama Griffitts avoids the Colorado Buffaloes' defenders during Arizona's 61-56 loss on Sunday in McKale Center. Griffitts had 10 points.
Colorado went on a 10-1 run to begin the second half, as Arizona did not make a field goal until senior forward Erica Barnes, who scored nine points and made a layup, making it 42-33 with 12:20 remaining.
“We just couldn’t get the ball in the hoop at key times,” senior guard Kama Griffitts said. “We had the plays to give us good looks, but they just weren’t going in for us.”
Griffitts scored 10 points.
Arizona finished regulation only making two of 20 shots
Colorado’s Jamee Swan made a turnaround jumper to tie the game at 49 with one second remaining to send the game into overtime.
Colorado went on a 7-2 run and did not look back. The Buffaloes would make five free throws down the stretch to secure the win and spoil Arizona’s senior day.
“It’s a tough way to go out for our seniors,” Arizona head coach Niya Butts said. “We came out flat in the second half and gave them life. It was certainty disappointing, as it never should have gotten to that situation of letting them back in it.”
In Friday’s 52-47 defeat to Utah (11-15, 4-11), Arizona again would start hot by making seven of its first 10 shots and lead 18-13 with 9:39 remaining in the first half.
Arizona led 25-20 into halftime, with the defense forcing nine Utah turnovers while Arizona only had two.
Utah started the second half on a 10-2 run and took a 32-27 lead with 15:02 remaining. Utah made five of its first six shots while Arizona made only one of five.
“I feel like we shot ourselves in the foot because we didn’t get those key defensive stops,” freshman forward LaBrittney Jones said. “We didn’t get back in transition to get set for our defense.”
Jones had 10 points and eight rebounds.
Utah’s star player Michelle Plouffe took over by scoring eight points in the first 12 minutes. She finished with 14 points and 11 rebounds.
Arizona finished the second half on 31 percent shooting.
—Follow Tyler Keckeisen @tyler_keckeisen