BOULDER, Colo. (AP) — Passing the ball with aplomb and showing a zeal for sharing the load offensively brought out the best in Colorado.
Lucas Siewert, George King and Xavier Johnson each scored 15 points and Colorado pulled away in the second half to beat Stanford 91-72 Thursday night.
Wesley Gordon, Deleon Brown and Tory Miller added 10 points apiece as part of a balanced offense that carried the Buffaloes (17-13, 7-10 Pac-12) to their eighth consecutive victory against Stanford (14-15, 6-11).
“When you have 25 assists and six turnovers, you’re hopefully going to win a lot of game,” Colorado coach Tad Boyle said. “We really shared the ball tonight. Togetherness on offense was big-time. I think this team showed when we play together, because we don’t have one guy that can carry this squad, when we play together and share it offensively and play with energy and passion defensively, this team can be as good as they want to be and beat any team in our league. But we’ve also shown when we don’t, we’re very average.”
The Buffaloes were anything but average against the Cardinal, outshooting Stanford from the floor 56 percent to 45 percent. They did it by being patient and getting the ball to the open man.
“We’ve been talking all week about sharing the ball, getting the best shot,” said Derrick White, who had eight of Colorado’s assists to go with his nine points. “When we’re moving the ball like that and no one has an agenda and no one is hunting their shots, we’re hard to guard and getting easy looks. It’s something we need to continue to do.”
Stanford coach Jerod Haase said the Cardinal had all kinds of problems with Colorado, especially defensively.
“They outplayed us in every statistical category,” he said. “It definitely started on the defensive end with the inability to guard. We weren’t guarding their three-point shooters and they were able to spread out and have their way.”
Marcus Allen had 15 points to lead the Cardinal. Reid Travis added 14 points.
Up by six at the half, Colorado seized control of the game with a stunning barrage of baskets starting the second half.
The 3-1/2 minute flurry in which Colorado outscored Stanford 16-5 carried the Buffaloes to a 57-40 lead and featured a driving dunk by Gordon and 3-pointers King and Johnson.
Stanford trailed 65-49 when Colorado took off again on a 10-2 run, ignited by Brown’s 3-pointer and the Buffaloes’ lead mushroomed to 23 points with 9 minutes remaining. Stanford did not threaten the rest of the way.
Colorado took a 41-35 lead at halftime, breaking away from a 28-all tie by outscoring Stanford 13-7 in the last four minutes of the period. Brown, King and Siewert all hit 3-pointers for Colorado in that span.
Colorado coach Tad Boyle registered his 100th win at the Coors Events Center, where he has gone 100-18 in seven seasons.
Stanford: The Cardinal’s inconsistent play this season again came to the fore against Colorado, absorbing a 19-point loss after pushing No. 6 Oregon to the limit before losing 75-73 last week. Stanford played the Buffaloes close for most of the first half but crumbled in the second half.
Colorado: The Buffaloes moved into a seventh-place tie with Arizona State in the conference standings and will go into the Pac-12 tournament anywhere from the No. 7-10 seed. Colorado has recovered nicely from its 0-7 start in Pac-12 play, going 7-3 in its last 10 games with one regular season game remaining.
Stanford: Rounds out the regular season by visiting Utah on Saturday.
Colorado: Hosts California on Saturday afternoon in a regular season finale.
By DENNIS GEORGATOS, Associated Press
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