Osborne, Betts Lead No. 5 UCLA Past Third-Ranked Colorado 76–68 in First Women’s Sellout in Boulder

Osborne, Betts Lead No. 5 UCLA Past Third-Ranked Colorado 76–68 in First Women’s Sellout in Boulder
Christeen Iwuala (22) of the UCLA Bruins Gabriela Jaquez (23) and Angela Dugalic (32) react after a teammate makes a basket during third quarter of the game against the Ohio State Buckeyes in Columbus, Ohio, on Dec. 18, 2023. (Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)
The Associated Press

BOULDER, Colo.—Charisma Osborne scored 22 points and Lauren Betts added 20 as fifth-ranked UCLA overcame an early nine-point deficit to beat third-ranked Colorado 76–68 Friday night in the first top-five matchup in the country this season.

The Bruins (15–1, 4–1 Pac-12) rebounded from a loss to USC earlier in the week that knocked them from the unbeaten ranks and dropped them from No. 2 in the country. They handed the Buffaloes (15–2, 5–1) their first loss at home.

The crowd of 11,338 was a record for a women’s game at Colorado and represented the team’s first sellout since March 17, 1995.

Only two men’s games have drawn bigger crowds to the arena, which opened in 1979.

Jaylyn Sherrod led four Buffs in double figures with 17 points.

Betts’ put-back bucket gave the Bruins a 49–48 lead heading into the fourth quarter and they then dominated the Buffaloes on their way to a runaway victory that had the crowd streaming for the exits in the final minute.

Betts had a tough night, missing half of her 16 shots and turning it over four times, but she made the clutch baskets in the second half that helped the Bruins pull away.

Betts, a native of Centennial, Colorado, brought a nation’s best 72.2% shooting clip into the game but missed seven of 10 shots in the first half with three turnovers that included a pair of 3-second violations.

The Buffs led 35-32 at halftime. Osborne’s 13 first-half points included a pull-up jumper just before the buzzer, whittling what had been a nine-point deficit to three points at the break.

Big Picture

UCLA: The Bruins hung tough and never let their deficit hit double digits. They chipped away through three quarters and dominated in the fourth.

Colorado: Frida Formann went in to shoot the free throw when Sherrod fell hard after getting fouled on a layup. While Sherrod went to the bench briefly, Formann nailed the free throw that put Colorado ahead 32-24. ... C Charlotte Whittaker, who made her first 3-pointer in three years in the Buffs’ victory over Stanford on Sunday, nailed another in the second quarter against the Bruins.

Up Next

UCLA visits No. 20 Utah on Monday night.

Colorado hosts No. 6 Southern California on Sunday.

By Arnie Stapleton