McPhee leads No. 8 Stanford women past Colorado 64-51 (Feb 11, 2017)
STANFORD, Calif. (AP) Stanford's Brittany McPhee was so unhappy with her first-half performance against Colorado on Friday night that she returned to the floor before her teammates to practice shooting free throws.
The extra work appeared to pay off.
McPhee scored 20 of her 26 points in the second half and the No. 8 Cardinal rallied for a 64-51 win over the Buffaloes to move into a three-way tie for first place in the Pac-12 Conference.
Stanford (21-4, 11-2) and Washington gained a share of the league's top spot after No. 9 Oregon State lost 70-50 at home to USC.
''A lot of things happened tonight in the Pac-12,'' said Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer, who won her 1,001st career game. ''It's rock and roll every night. You've got to be ready. It's fun to be in first place.''
McPhee, who also had a career-high 11 rebounds, had missed two foul shots with no time left on the clock in the second quarter.
''I wanted to get out there. I don't think anybody's ever happy missing free throws,'' said McPhee, who made three of her four attempts in the second half.
VanDerveer played a small lineup in the second half and McPhee, a 6-foot guard, moved into the power forward spot, where her aggressiveness going to the basket helped her score 12 points in a span of 4:10 in the third quarter.
''I use the analogy of an orchestra and it was a different solo tonight,'' VanDerveer said of McPhee stepping up with a big night.
Leading scorer Erica McCall shot just 4 for 13, but contributed 15 points and 10 rebounds for Stanford.
Colorado (13-11, 3-10) led 27-24 at halftime and was down by just two points entering the fourth quarter. But first-year coach JR Payne said Stanford's 18 offensive rebounds - leading to 14 second-chance points - were the difference in the game.
''Stanford was down for three quarters, but they stayed positive, they continued to compete,'' Payne said. ''They dug their heels in when they needed to. That's a championship culture.
''I saw the flipside with our team. As soon as things started to go against us, we fell apart.''
Makenzie Ellie scored 14 points to lead Colorado.
Colorado, alone in 11th place in the conference standings, remains winless in 12 games against Stanford since joining the Pac-12 and fell to 0-9 all-time in games at Maples Pavilion.
Stanford rebounded from a Monday loss to UCLA and positioned itself to play Oregon State with the Pac-12 title possibly at stake on Feb. 24 at Corvallis, Oregon.
A GRAND FOR SAMUELSON: With four points, Stanford senior guard Karlie Samuelson became the 38th player in program history to score 1,000 career points. She now has 1,003.
MIXED BAG FOR LEONARD: Sophomore point guard Kennedy Leonard, Colorado's leading scorer at 18.6 points per game, was held to seven points on 2-for-10 shooting, but had seven assists and just one turnover.
A CLEAN SECOND HALF: Stanford turned the ball over 11 times in the first half, but just once more until the final 15 seconds of the game.
Colorado: plays Sunday at Cal, which beat them 65-53 at Boulder last month.
Stanford: remains at home Sunday for a date with Utah, which the Cardinal beat 77-58 last month in Salt Lake City.