Colorado visits Stanford in key Pac-12 matchup

NCAA Basketball

Colorado is trying to stay within striking distance of the Pac-12 regular season title as it begins a four-game road trip at Stanford on Thursday night.

The Cardinal (12-7, 8-5 Pac-12) are coming off a sweep of home and away games against California and are also in contention, sitting two games out of first place in the conference.

Colorado (15-5, 9-4) won back-to-back home games against Arizona and Oregon State and sits one game back (two in the loss column) behind USC and UCLA.

Against the Beavers, the Buffaloes shot 55.8 percent (29-for-52) led by a breakout performance from freshman Tristan da Silva (15 points). Jeriah Horne, who is averaging 11.3 points per game and shooting 44.7 percent from 3-point range, also scored a team-high 16 points.

“Tristan has definitely stepped up,” Horne said. “He continues to work hard each and every day in practice. He’s always trying to learn. I do my best to talk to him and make sure that he’s caught up to speed.”

Despite scoring only six points against Oregon State, McKinley Wright IV leads Colorado for the season with 14.5 points and 5.7 assists per game. Wright IV had 14 points and eight assists the last time these teams met on Jan. 16, when the Buffaloes came away with a 77-64 victory in Boulder. Evan Battey recorded a double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds.

Stanford’s Oscar da Silva, a candidate for Pac-12 Player of the Year, scored 23 points in Sunday’s 76-70 win over California and is averaging 19.4 points, 7.2 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game.

“He has been as consistent as anybody on the team,” Stanford coach Jerod Haase said. “He had an elite-level, stellar performance today, being able to shoot and score in many different ways.”

The Cardinal shot 54.2 percent and 58.3 percent in the sweep of the Golden Bears and dominated in the paint outscoring them by a combined 84-44. Da Silva also had a double-double with 24 points and 11 rebounds while Jaiden Delaire added 14 points in Stanford’s 70-55 victory over Cal on Feb. 4.

Delaire (13.1 points, 4.1 rebounds per game) and Stanford should benefit if Ziaire Williams (12.5 points, 5.7 rebounds per game) is back on the court. Williams missed Stanford’s past six games for undisclosed reasons but was on the bench during Sunday’s game.

Junior guard Bryce Wills (knee) returned to action on Sunday for the first time in more than a month due to a knee injury, and junior forward Lukas Kisunas chipped in a career-high 12 points and six rebounds.

–Field Level Media

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