The Colorado Buffaloes continue moving through Italy as if they’re being led by Dwight D. Eisenhower wearing a Tad Boyle disguise. (They look similar enough.) After having the weekend off to be tourists, the Buffs beat the Vincenza All-Stars, 87-54, as they improve to 3-0 on their pre-season campaign.
Buffs improve to 3-0 on Italy trip with a 87-54 win over Vincenza All-Stars. Team will like the +19 reb diff (58-39), 17 steals, 19 asst. pic.twitter.com/2j607Ys9yJ— Colorado Basketball (@CUBuffsMBB) August 21, 2017
McKinley Wright and George King have started all three games and they continue to look impressive. McKinley upped his usage rate as he picked up 13 points and 4 assists in 23 minutes — he’s a very promising guard who could start from day one — and King scored an efficient 10 points. Deleon Brown, Namon Wright and Tory Miller-Stewart were the other starters and they were also solid. Brown only shot 2-7 and had 4 fouls, but he did grab 3 steals and a block. Namon is playing increasingly more minutes and with his 6 three-point attempts, he’s showing that he will likely be the Buffs’ primary perimeter scorer. Miller-Stewart, meanwhile, was superb as he grabbed seemingly every rebound within reach as he had 9 boards in just 15 minutes. TMS also had an efficient 8 points and only had one foul.
The bench wasn’t nearly as good as it was last game — not that the same players were on the bench — but they were good enough. Dom Collier was 0-4 on threes and 2-10 from the field, but he got to the line and dished out 5 assists. D’Shawn Schwartz struggled shooting as well, but he did grab 6 rebounds. Dallas Walton continues to show his potential as he had 7 points and 8 rebounds in only 17 minutes. The most impressive players from the bench, and maybe from the Buffs as a whole, were Tyler Bey and Lucas Siewert. Bey is a well-rounded freshman with star potential on the defensive end, and he showed that skillset with 6 points, 5 rebounds, 2 steals, 2 blocks and 2 assists. Siewert showed his worth as he had 6 points on 2-3 shooting, 7 rebounds, 2 assists, 4 steals and a block.
The main thing for the Buffs in this showing is that they were monstrous on the boards. They outrebounded the Vincenza All-Stars 58-39 and had a whopping 22 offensive rebounds. The Buffs struggled a bit with shooting — 41% from the field, 26% from the field, 56% from the line — but they won the Tad Boyle way: defense and rebounding.
Update: As two commenters pointed out, there was a mysterious name in the box score, A.J. Martinka. According to his bio on CUBuffs.com, Martinka is a freshman 6’5 guard from Stanwood, Washington. That’s literally all it says. He’s presumably a walk-on. Based on a Google image search, he kind of looks like the antagonist in 17 Again.