Last night, the Colorado Buffaloes hope of winning the conference, and likely heading to the NCAA Tournament, came to a crashing halt as they faced the buzzsaw known as the Arizona Wildcats. The Buffs lost by ten points, but that doesn’t show the fight that they had in this game.
This game was the bizzaro-world version of the prior matchup between these two teams. The Buffs could not get ANYTHING going inside, despite scoring 54 points in the paint against Arizona a mere two weeks ago. On the other hand, Azoulas Tubelis had his way with whoever was guarding him in the first half. He had 18 points to lead all scorers, followed closely by Jabari Walker, who was magnificent this game. Walker had five threes in the first half on his way to 17 points, and the whole CU team was shooting lights out from beyond the arc. They ended the game with 16 threes (!!!), but it wasn’t enough. The Buffs ended the first half down 9 after a disastrous play from KJ Simpson at the end of the half.
The second half saw the Buffs get close numerous times. A cavalcade of threes from Evan Battey, Keeshawn Barthelemy and Julian Hammond kept the Buffs in this game, but foul trouble also kept them from taking over. Jabari Walker and Evan Battey spent much of the 2nd half on the bench with four fouls, and Tristan Da Silva also faced foul trouble. That allowed Arizona to pound it inside at will. This Arizona team is VERY good at attacking weaknesses.
In the end, the Buffs couldn’t hang on without any interior scoring and they lost, 72-62. That ends the Buffs run at the Pac-12 championship, but more importantly, it also takes them off any sort of bubble for the NCAA Tournament. The Buffs will await their NIT fate this week.
Thank you for a great season.