Well, the 2017 Colorado Buffaloes started out with some good old Tadball. It was precarious for a while, but the defense held strong and the defense finally held.
The offense started out hot. George King left very early with two fouls, but that barely slowed down the Buffs early. McKinley Wright was distributing and Namon Wright started out aggressive. UNC started settling in and set the tone with the rest of the night, with Andre Spight taking the majority of the shots. CU showed off the young guys early, with D’Shawn Schwartz first off the bench replacing George King and Lazar Nikolic playing much more than expected. Tyler Bey also quickly came off the bench and provided some quick points. The same problem that plagued CU during the exhibition game against Colorado School of Mines reared its head. The rebounding was suspect at best, despite the team effort, and the shots weren’t falling at times. The only offense came from Deleon Brown, who was playing inspired ball. He scored seven straight points, locked down Spight, and drew a charge. There were some awful post entry passes and some freshman mistakes, and the fouls started to add up. King, Namon Wright, Schwartz, and Deleon Brown all had two fouls at half.
The second half started poorly for the Buffs. UNC figured out the defense as was driving hard towards the basket. George King started forcing his shot in order to get in rhythm, and UNC was challenging vertically. They tied it up at 44 all and threatened the lead a couple times. However, after that, CU LOCKED DOWN. They tightened up on defense, flipped the rebounding edge (50-43 to CU), and gave the ball to McKinley Wright a lot. Boy did he deliver. He ran the offense, attacked as often as possible, and played great D on Spight. It wasn’t just him. Tory Miller-Stewart performed admirably when switched onto guards, and was the only CU player to hit his free throws. Namon Wright hit his shots, and George King started playing inside. The team just tightened up, and seemed to play how Tad wanted. They allowed less than ten points in the last ten minutes, and scored enough on the offensive side to pull away. A great first step for a young team. Just hit the free throws