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Utah Valley takes care of No. 3 Colorado in second round of NIT

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Trey Woodbury had 25 points, seven rebounds and seven assists, Justin Harmon scored 18 points and Utah Valley beat third-seeded Colorado 81-69 in the second round of the NIT in Boulder, Colo., on Sunday night.

Le’Tre Darthard scored 13 points and Aziz Bandaogo added 12 points for Utah Valley, which will host Cincinnati in the quarterfinals on Wednesday night.

Lawson Lovering scored a career-high 21 points, Ethan Wright had 17 and Tristan da Silva finished with 12 for the Buffaloes (18-17).

The Wolverines (27-8) led by five early but Colorado rallied to go up 32-27 late in the first half. Utah Valley went on an 11-3 run to go back in front, but Wright’s 3-pointer in the final minute of the period tied it at 38 at intermission.

Bandaogo opened the second half with a dunk to spark a 10-2 run for the Wolverines. Wright made a 3-pointer, but Woodbury hit two jumpers to increase the lead to 54-46 with 14:01 left.

The Buffaloes grabbed momentum when Lovering made a hook shot in the lane and da Silva made two layups and a free throw to cut it to 54-53 with 12:31 remaining.

Harmon ended the surge with a layup, but da Silva converted a three-point play to tie it at 56. The teams traded baskets before Utah Valley made layups on consecutive possessions, Colorado turned it over and Woodbury hit a deep 3-pointer to make it 65-58.

After trading empty possessions, Wright’s three-point play got the Buffaloes within four with just over six minutes left, Bandaogo dunked and da Silva made a layup to make it 67-63. Darthard made a short jumper, Nique Clifford split a pair of free throws and Woodbury hit a driving layup to increase the lead to 71-64 with four minutes remaining.

Lovering made a free throw, Woodbury hit a running layup, da Silva missed jumpers on consecutive possessions and Harmon scored a fastbreak layup to make it a 10-point game with 1:56 left.

Wright made a floater and Harmon made two free throws to make it 77-67, and the Wolverines closed it out from there.

–Field Level Media

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