Stanford tops Colorado 62-53 on Senior Day for McPhee and Johnson

The Cardinal celebrate with a win for Brittany McPhee and Kaylee Johnson on Senior Day

STANFORD, Calif. – Maples Pavilion continues to be friendly confines for the Stanford Cardinal (18-8, 12-2) as they extended their Pac-12 home undefeated streak (8-0) after herding the Colorado Buffaloes, 62-53, on Senior Day.

The Cardinal have defeated the Colorado (12-13, 3-11) for 13 consecutive games, and are 10-0 overall against them at home. Their defense held the Buffaloes to 33 percent shooting, although Stanford only shot just under 38 percent themselves. In addition, the home team attempted a season-high 35 free throws this game, compared to six in their previous contest against Utah.

“They [Colorado] were really aggressive, and I think our team tried really hard to play through things, and it does make for a disjointed game,” Stanford head coach Tara VanDerveer explained about the exorbitant number of free throws. “They thought that was their best chance; put us on the free throw line.”

As for the Cardinal seniors, Brittany McPhee and Kaylee Johnson, who were honored postgame, they both had impressive games on a significant day.

McPhee had nothing but praise for her coach.

“It’s been awesome to watch someone so successful at what they do, and kind of take notes,” McPhee said. “It doesn’t happen by just showing up, it happens by working hard and being invested and loving what you do. It’s been an honor to play under her.”

McPhee had a double-double, with a game-high 25 points and 12 rebounds, while Johnson snatched 10 rebounds, swiped two steals, and scored five points.

“When you commit to Stanford, you’re like wow, this Hall of Fame coach like Tara obviously knows everything,” Johnson said about her legendary leader. “When you get here and you’re practicing every day and playing every day, you’re like, Tara’s a normal person!”

Stanford’s other players also contributed to the victory, as junior guard, Marta Sniezek, offered seven points and five rebounds while sophomore guard, DiJonai Carrington, chipped in seven points and seven rebounds from off the bench.

Sophomore guard Quinessa Caylao-Do led Colorado with 16 points and five boards. Junior guard Kennedy Leonard added 12 points, despite fouling out with 15 seconds left in the game.

The Cardinal will try to run the table and go 9-0 at home during Pac-12 play, when they host the California Golden Bears, Thursday, February 15 in the first round of the Battle of the Bay series. Part two of the series will be Feb. 17 at Haas Pavilion in Berkeley.

Colorado heads home to Boulder to host the conference’s Washington institutions: Washington Huskies on Friday, February 16 and the Washington State Cougars on Sunday, February 18.

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