From the opening tip to the final buzzer on Tuesday night, the Colorado women’s basketball was never really in danger of losing.
Simply winning a game isn’t the standard being set by head coach JR Payne, however.
Mya Hollingshed had a double-double and the Buffaloes coasted past Texas Southern, 79-47, at CU Events Center, but it was clearly a game that left Payne with some coaching points for the next practice.
“I just said to the team, ‘It says something about your program if you can be disappointed in a 30-point win,” Payne said. “I’m not disappointed in our effort or focus or things like that. I just, I really want to play good, clean basketball and we did that in spurts certainly. The fourth quarter was great. First quarter was great. But I just have really high expectations for our group and I really want us to be excellent in everything that we’re doing every possession. I want it to be excellent, and we had some slippage tonight.”
Despite a less-than-stellar middle of the game, the Buffs (5-0) dominated and didn’t show any signs of fatigue after playing just 24 hours earlier. CU rolled past Samford, 81-48, on Monday and has now won back-to-back games by at least 30 points for the first time since early in the 2018-19 season against Prairie View and Samford.
Against Texas Southern (0-4), the Buffs raced to a 9-0 lead just 2 minutes, 12 seconds into the game. The Tigers did put together a couple of runs that cut into the lead, including a mini-run midway through the third quarter, but the Buffs always responded.
Hollingshed sparked a 19-2 run over a seven-minute stretch in the second half to put the game away. She finished with 20 points and 10 rebounds.
“It was nothing special,” Hollingshed said of that run by the Buffs. “I think we just locked in and honed in on the key details of just doing what we do best and not getting outside of ourselves and executing our offense and finishing the plays on defense.”
For Hollingshed, it was a bit of a milestone night. She became the 18th player in CU history to reach the 1,300-point mark for her career and moved into a tie with Sandy Bean (1978-82) for 17th on the career scoring list with 1,317 points. Hollingshed also posted the 18th double-double of her career.
“It’s always great to be up there with some of the greats of CU’s history, but as long as I’m able to contribute to my team and we are able to win continuously this season that’s all I really care about,” she said.
Hollingshed got some help Tuesday from Tayanna Jones (12 points, six rebounds), Kindyll Wetta (12 points, three steals), Peanut Tuitele (eight points, five rebounds) and Quay Miller (seven points, five rebounds), among others.
“We also had some really great possessions and some really great performances,” Payne said. “I think we’re a very good basketball team and I think we can play very good basketball consistently. And that, for me, is the goal. So yeah, glad to win and glad that everybody played and onward we go.”
After three games in five days, the Buffs now have just three days off before another back-to-back set on Saturday and Sunday.
“I think these guys love the R-word – rest,” Payne said. “Three games in five days is so many games and then to add two more (next weekend) is a lot. So I think these next three days are really important for us. Strategically, we need to really rest and we have to maybe get up and down a little bit and then we need to rest again before we play back-to-back. We’ve got to strategize these next few days.”
Miller surpassed the 400-point mark for her career, with 404 (361 while at Washington). … The Buffs are off to a 5-0 start for the fourth time in Payne’s six seasons.
What went right: From the start, the Buffs were aggressive and set the tone early. Overall, the Buffs shot the ball well from the floor and played good defense throughout the night.
What went wrong: There were a couple of spurts where the Buffs got sloppy and allowed Texas Southern to cut into the lead, but those stretches didn’t last long.
Star of the game: Mya Hollingshed. The senior posted a double-double, finishing with 20 points and 10 rebounds while adding two assists, two blocks and three steals.
What’s next: The Buffs host Louisiana Tech on Saturday at 1 p.m.
Colorado 79, Texas Southern 47
TEXAS SOUTHERN (0-4)
Avent 2-11 1-2 7, Perry 5-9 1-1 12, Reynolds 0-1 0-0 0, Bridges 0-4 2-3 2, Aaron 2-10 0-0 5, Mitchell 1-7 2-2 4, Austin 4-8 2-5 12, Knight 0-1 1-2 1, Buster 2-4 0-0 4, Green 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 16-55 9-15 47.
Sherrod 0-2 0-0 0, Formann 4-11 0-0 9, Finau 1-4 0-0 3, Hollingshed 8-11 2-4 20, Tuitele 4-7 0-0 8, Jones 4-5 3-4 12, Sadler 1-3 1-2 3, Taylor 0-0 2-2 2, Miller 3-8 1-1 7, Blacksten 1-4 1-2 3, Wetta 6-6 0-0 12, Singer 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 32-61 10-15 79.
Texas Southern 8 21 10 8 – 47
Colorado 20 24 14 21 – 79
3-point goals – Texas Southern 6-17 (Avent 2-6, Austin 2-2, Aaron 1-5, Perry 1-2, Bridges 0-1, Knight 0-1), Colorado 5-16 (Hollingshed 2-3, Formann 1-7, Finau 1-1, Jones 1-1, Miller 0-3, Sherrod 0-1). Rebounds – Texas Southern 30 (Mitchell 6), Colorado 42 (Hollingshed 10). Assists – Texas Southern 5 (Aaron 3), Colorado 17 (Sherrod 6). Steals – Texas Southern 7 (Bridges, Mitchell 2), Colorado 14 (Hollingshed, Wetta 3). Turnovers – Texas Southern 25, Colorado 20. Total fouls – Texas Southern 17, Colorado 15. Fouled out – Perry. A – 969.