Brian Stafford scored a career-high 32 points, including four free throws with under a minute to play, and Denver held off Portland State 69-61 on Friday night in the season opener for both teams.
Chris Udofia added 15 points and four blocked shots for Denver. Nate Lozeau had 19 points to lead Portland State. Chehales Tapscott added 18 points and 12 rebounds and Charles Odum had 13 points.
Denver stretched its lead to 49-37 with an 11-2 burst capped by Chase Hallam's running bank shot with 9:54 remaining.
Portland State fought back to within 53-46 after Lozeau hit a layup and Odum made a couple of free throws with 5:47 remaining but Stafford hit a jumper from the top of the key to make it 59-48 with 3:11 remaining.