LOS ANGELES (AP) — Colorado blew all of an eight-point lead, fell behind by three with 1:36 to go and then pulled out a thrilling victory.
Andre Roberson made the go-ahead layup with 10 seconds remaining, lifting the Pac-12 newcomers to a 63-62 victory over Oregon in the league tournament’s quarterfinals Thursday night.
“That’s what March basketball is all about,” Buffaloes coach Tad Boyle said. “Our guys bucked up when they had to.”
Devoe Joseph, an All-Pac-12 first team selection, missed the potential winning 3-pointer from the left sideline at the buzzer for the Ducks.
“The whole play came down on me, and I took a bad shot,” he said, after burying his head in his locker. “I should have been more aggressive and driven to the basket.”
Carlon Brown scored 18 points and Roberson added 12 points and 10 rebounds for the sixth-seeded Buffs (21-11), who advanced to Friday’s semifinals against No. 2 seed California, a 77-71 winner over seventh-seeded Stanford earlier at Staples Center.
The Buffs controlled the paint despite getting outrebounded 43-29 and completed a season sweep of the third-seeded Ducks, who lost 72-71 in the teams’ lone regular-season meeting. Colorado notched its second straight 20-win season with a victory over Utah, the league’s other new team, on Wednesday.
Tony Woods led the Ducks (22-9) with a career-high 14 points. Joseph added 12 while missing all seven of his 3-point attempts, and Carlos Emory had 11 points.
“It came down to the end of the game, and we did not execute,” Woods said.
The Ducks had been so reliable on the road, with more than half their wins coming away from home under first-year coach Dana Altman, but they couldn’t hang on after a 10-0 run gave them a 60-58 lead with 2:44 to play.
E.J. Singler had four straight points, and Emory hit the go-ahead layup in the spurt that gave the Ducks their first lead of the second half, 60-58.
Brown made one of two free throws to draw the Buffs within one before Joseph hit the Ducks’ final basket to keep them ahead, 62-59, with 1:35 left.
Brown made a layup. Then, Spencer Dinwiddie’s shot was blocked by Woods. Roberson grabbed the offensive rebound and put it back up for the game-winner.
“We were just trying to attack,” Roberson said. “We didn’t want to take a jump shot late in the game. When I saw Spencer go, I just crashed the board like I normally do and it just fell into my hand.”
Singler was supposed to set a pick on the final play.
“Devoe was supposed to get a quick look, and E.J. was supposed to set a screen,” Altman said, “but E.J. slid to the basket, didn’t set the pick and we didn’t get the shot we wanted.”