No. 9 Utah runs away from Colorado in 74-49 victory
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) Brandon Taylor scored 14 points and Delon Wright added 13 points, six assists and four steals to help No. 9 Utah run away from Colorado for a 74-49 victory on Wednesday night.
Dakarai Tucker added 11 off the bench as the Utes (13-2, 3-0 Pac-12) won their sixth straight. Utah blew the game open early after clamping down defensively on the Buffaloes.
Asika Booker and Jaron Hopkins each scored 12 points for Colorado (9-6, 2-1 Pac-12), which was held to its second lowest point total this season. The Buffaloes shot just 39.5 percent from the field (17-of-43).
Utah ran away from Colorado for good after halftime.
The Buffaloes cut the lead to eight at 33-25 on a jumper from Booker. Utah threw the hammer down after that. Starting with a 3-pointer from Taylor, the Utes made eight consecutive baskets over four minutes and took a 54-31 lead with 12:55 left.
Utah led by as many as 35 points in the second half, going ahead 73-38 after Taylor made a pair of free throws to finish off a 14-1 run with 4:01 left.
Booker and Hopkins each scored baskets on back-to-back possessions to help Colorado stake out a quick 12-8 lead in the first half. But the Buffaloes lost momentum after a prolonged dry spell on offense.
Utah took its first lead at 14-12 when Poeltl blocked Gordon Wesley's jumper on one end and hit a layup on the other. The Utes really got cooking when Brekkott Chapman drilled a pair of 3-pointers to fuel a 15-0 run.
Brandon Taylor finished it off with a pair of free throws to give Utah a 29-15 lead with 2:14 left before halftime.
Strong defense helped Utah carve out a double-digit lead. The Utes held Colorado without a field goal for a 10:14 stretch in the first half and held the Buffaloes scoreless for more than 8 minutes. During that stretch, the Buffaloes turned the ball over seven times and missed five straight shots.
Dominque Collier finally broke the ice on a layup with 1:40 left in the half. Xavier Talton added a 3-pointer on the next possession, but Utah took a 31-21 lead into the locker room.
Utah: The Utes have won their first three Pac-12 games by an average margin of 27 points per game. . Utah is 3-0 in Pac-12 play for the first time in school history. The Utes are enjoying their highest AP ranking since finishing the 1998-99 season at No. 6.
Colorado: The Buffaloes committed 18 turnovers, leading to 28 points for Utah. Colorado scored its fewest points since a 56-33 loss at Wyoming on Nov. 22. . The Buffaloes last defeated a ranked opponent on the road on Feb. 7, 2012, when they beat then No. 19 Oregon, 48-47.
Utah plays at Arizona State Jan. 15.
Colorado plays at Arizona Jan. 15.