Buffs use big 2nd half to beat Colorado State, 86-80

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              Colorado guard McKinley Wright IV, front, picks up a loose ball as Colorado State guard Kris Martin pursues in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Dec. 1, 2018, in Boulder, Colo. Colorado won 86-80. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
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BOULDER, Colo. (AP) — Colorado hit 12 consecutive shots during a decisive run in the second half before surviving a late Colorado State rally, and the Buffaloes beat the Rams 86-80 on Saturday.

Tyler Bey had 23 points and 10 rebounds and McKinley Wright IV tied a career high with 11 assists along with 18 points and seven rebounds for Colorado (5-1).

Kris Martin led the Rams (4-4) with 21 points, J.D. Paige had 17 and Nico Carvacho had 15 points and 10 rebounds.

Colorado trailed by one when it got hot from the field. Wright hit three field goals, Bey also had three and the Buffaloes went ahead 70-59 with 6:19 left.

The Rams got back into the game by making five straight shots, the last by Anthony Masinton-Bonner to cap a 16-4 run to give Colorado State a 75-74 lead.

Evan Battey put the Buffaloes back in front with a 3-point play, and after Carvacho missed the front end of a one-and-one, Shane Gatling’s dunk made it 79-75 with 40 seconds left.

Colorado hit five free throws down the stretch to hold on.

The Buffaloes shot just 33 percent in the first half and trailed 32-29 at intermission. They turned that around in the second half, hitting 62 percent and scoring 57 points to beat their in-state rival.

BIG PICTURE

Colorado State: The Rams suffered their first true road loss of the season under new head coach Niko Medved. Colorado State will have a period of adjustment, but the good news is Nevada isn’t on the schedule until Jan. 23.

Colorado: Without any marquee non-conference opponents, wins are at a premium for the Buffaloes. They recovered from a cold first half to take care of business. Colorado needs to do well in the Diamond Head Classic later this month to put itself in a good position heading into Pac-12 play.

UP NEXT

Colorado State: Hosts Arkansas on Wednesday.

Colorado: Hosts South Dakota on Tuesday.