Leonard’s 31 pace Bu≠s
boulder» A year ago in Fort Collins, the Colorado women’s basketball team had a victory snatched away from it in the closing seconds.
On Thursday night, the Buffaloes made sure that wasn’t going to be possible in Colorado State’s trip to Boulder.
Guard Kennedy Leonard scored a career-high 31 points and the 18th-ranked Buffs rolled past rival CSU 74-56 at the Coors Events Center.
CU (9-0) is off to its best start since winning its first nine in the 2013-14 season. It’s the sixth 9-0 start in program history, and the Buffs have the best record in the Pac-12 Conference.
Despite not shooting particularly well as a team (38.8 percent) from the field, the Buffs were aggressive on defense and on the boards to knock off the visiting Rams (5-4).
On Dec. 2, 2015, Leonard scored a go-ahead layup with 3.6 seconds to play, but CSU’s Ellen Nystrom hit a jumper with 1.7 seconds left for the win. It was a heartbreaking loss in a season that went sour for the Buffs.
This season has been anything but sour for the Buffs, who have won all nine games by at least 10 points.
Haley Smith had a careerhigh 13 rebounds and just missed a double-double, scoring eight points for CU.
Leonard was the star once again. She tied a school record with seven 3-pointers, the eighth player in program history to hit that many, and the first since Bianca Smith on Jan. 31, 2009.
Leonard was the first CU player with more than 30 points since Brittany Spears had 36 on March 27, 2011. She also had seven assists and five rebounds.
Callie Kaiser led CSU with 17 points. Elin Gustavsson added 12 points and Nystrom 10.
CU’s Kennedy Leonard dribbles past Stine Austgulen of CSU on Thursday night. Jeremy Papasso, Daily Camera