Without Spencer Dinwiddie, the Buffs weren't able to overcome their offensive struggles and lost at the Coors Event Center tonight for the first time this season to UCLA 69-56. The effort on both sides of the ball wasn't strong enough and Colorado missed too many layups and committed 17 turnovers. Askia Booker led the Buffaloes with 21 points and Josh Scott scored 19 and the two were the only Buffs in double figures. With the loss, Tad Boyle's team falls to 14-4 overall and 3-2 in conference play.
Things the Buffaloes did well:
They played well in the first 20 minutes and were good enough on offense to have a chance to come out and win in the second half as they were 12-of-27 from the floor in the first half and 3-of-8 from three. For the game, Josh Scott shot 7-of-12 and Askia Booker went 7-of-11 from the field and 5-of-7 from three, but even an efficient output from both of those players wasn't enough.
Things the Buffaloes struggled with:
They lost their leading scorer so it's expected for them to have a letdown on offense, but there's no excuse for missed free throws, layups and committing turnovers. The Buffs were 11-of-19 from the charity stripe on the night and only had eight made field goals in the second half. They didn't convert easy looks around the rim that could have kept them in the game and weren't better from beyond the arc shooting 5-of-17 from three.
Wesley Gordon had chances inside, but was 0-of-3 from the field and had two points which came from two made free throws out of four attempted. Xavier Johnson was 1-of-6 from the field and scored two points as well.
On defense, it wasn't much better. The Buffs were lost throughout the game and they just couldn't seem to box out the Bruins. UCLA had 15 offensive rebounds and Jordan Adams picked up 13 total rebounds with six of them coming on the offensive glass. In the paint, the Bruins outscored the Buffaloes 34-18.
The Buffs are still adjusting to losing their best player, but a win wasn't out of the question tonight. Colorado just didn't take advantage of their opportunities and UCLA did. The Bruins had 40 combined points off of second chances and turnovers and the Buffs had eight. The season isn't over whatsoever, but someone is going to have to step up because it's clear that production just from Askia Booker and Josh Scott isn't going to cut it.
Colorado has a great chance to rebound from this loss when they take on USC on Saturday at the Coors Event Center at 12 p.m. The Trojans are just 9-7 on the season and have yet to win in the Pac-12. Despite not having Dinwiddie, the Buffs would have together a much lesser performance than they did tonight to fall to USC.