The University of Colorado men’s basketball earned their first conference road win and second overall conference win against Washington State on Saturday night.
In a long and hard-fought battle, the Buffs finished strongly with a 58-49 win over the Cougars. It was the Buffs’ relentless defense that allowed the team to stay in the game.
The Cougars’ record now stands at 10-8 overall and 1-4 in the Pac-12, while CU advances to 12-6 and 2-4.
WSU’s field goal percentage was limited to 29.6 in the first half, which is the lowest of any CU opponent this season.
Junior Andre Roberson’s persistent defense held the Pac-12’s second leading scorer, Brock Motum who averages 19.4 points per game, to 13 points on Saturday.
CU led by four points (23-19) going into intermission after the Cougars sunk a 3-point buzzer beater.
The Cougars took an early lead in the second half, outscoring the Buffs 7-2 (26-25). Shortly after, WSU’s Royce Woolridge added five uninterrupted points to give the Cougars their largest lead of the night at 31-27.
With back-to-back points scored by freshman Xavier Johnson and sophomore Spencer Dinwiddie, the Buffs regained a one-point lead.
Dinwiddie hit the Buffs’ only 3-pointer of the night. Over the past two games CU has shot poorly from behind the arc, only making 2-19 attempts.
Dinwiddie posted 16 points, Johnson provided 14 and freshman Josh Scott added 11. Sophomore Askia Booker had 7 points, and two of his field goals came at a critical moment in the game. CU’s bench added 20 points compared to WSU’s 11.
Johnson and Scott provided significant post presence for the Buffs by out-boarding the Cougars 36-32 and dominating the battles in the paint at 32-24.
CU did not post a single field goal for the last 6:15 of the game. Five free throws were the only points added then, four by Scott and one by Johnson.
The game was back and forth for a solid 10 minutes until Booker hit two jumpers and Dinwiddie added a three-point play, clinching the victory at 58-49.
Look out for the next home basketball games against Stanford at 8 p.m. Thursday and California at 1:30 p.m. Sunday.
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Jessica Malknecht at Jessica.firstname.lastname@example.org.