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Pac-12 men’s basketball tournament: Colorado beats Oregon State 73-58 in quarterfinals; Oregon locks down Utah in 66-54 win

Pac-12 men’s basketball tournament: Colorado beats Oregon State 73-58 in quarterfinals; Oregon locks down Utah in 66-54 win
Colorado's McKinley Wright IV drives around Oregon State's Ethan Thompson during the first half in the quarterfinals of the Pac-12 men's tournament on Thursday in Las Vegas. (John Locher / Associated Press)

McKinley Wright IV scored 17 points and Colorado blew most of a 21-point lead before knocking off Oregon State 73-58 Thursday in the Pac-12 quarterfinals.

The fifth-seeded Buffaloes (21-11) dominated early, racing out to a 21-point lead in the first half. Colorado bogged down when Oregon State turned up the defensive pressure, watching its lead dwindle down to six.

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The Buffaloes gathered themselves and started stretching the lead back, overcoming 7-for-23 shooting in the second half to earn a spot in Friday's semifinals against top-seeded Washington.

The fourth-seeded Beavers (18-13) came out tight after getting a bye into the quarterfinals and didn't crack double digits in points until 5:55 of the first half.

Oregon State used a pair 10-0 runs midway through the second half to get back in it, but couldn't dig all the way out of the big early hole.

Tres Tinkle led the Beavers with 23 points.

The Buffaloes grinded out a 56-51 win over California in their Pac-12 opener, overcoming sloppy turnovers and holding on after blowing most of a double-digit lead.

Oregon State earned the tournament's No. 4 seed and a coveted first-round bye by beating Washington State in its regular-season finale.

The Beavers won the lone regular-season meeting 76-74, but Colorado had the energy early in the rematch despite playing the day before.

Playing superbly at both ends, the Buffaloes raced out to a 28-8 lead and led 37-18 at halftime. Colorado made 15 of 28 shots and held the Beavers to 8 of 29, missing all nine of their 3-point attempts.

Oregon State became the aggressor to start the second half, making every possession a struggle for the Buffaloes.

Colorado missed its first seven shots and Oregon State went on a 10-0 run to pull within 43-32. The Buffaloes pushed back, but the Beavers followed with another 10-0 run to pull within 49-43.

Colorado calmed itself after the second barrage and pushed the lead back to double digits.

Oregon 66, Utah 54: Louis King and Payton Pritchard scored 20 points each, and Oregon grinded out a 66-54 win over Utah Thursday night in the Pac-12 quarterfinals.

The sixth-seeded Ducks (20-12) had a second straight strong defensive game in the Pac-12 tournament to get halfway to their goal of four wins in four days.

Oregon caused the Utes problems with its press even without forcing many turnovers, often making them run their offense deep into the shot clock. The Ducks had Utah's leading scorer Sedrick Barefield in foul trouble in the first half and held him to two points on 2-of-12 shooting. He was 1 for 9 from 3-point range.

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Francis Okoro tied the Pac-12 tournament record with six blocked shots to help Oregon move on to face Arizona State in Friday's semifinals.

No. 3 seed Utah (17-14) struggled to find an offensive rhythm, shooting 34 percent and 2 of 23 of from the 3-point line.

Donnie Tillman led the Utes with 18 points.

The Ducks put on a defensive show in their Pac-12 opener, snagging 14 steals while holding Washington State to 31 percent shooting in the 55-47 win. It was the fifth straight game Oregon held its opponent to under 62 points, a run that began shortly after coach Dana Altman shifted to a starting lineup with four 6-foot-9 players.

That earned the Ducks a rematch with Utah, which they beat by two in last year's Pac-12 semifinals on Kenny Wooten's game-ending blocked shot. Oregon also beat the Utes in their lone meeting this season, 78-72 in Salt Lake City.

Both teams clamped down on defense in the quarterfinals, neither giving an inch.

Utah had a stretch of more than six minutes without a field goal and shot 8 for 21 in the first half. Barefield was limited to eight minutes after picking up two fouls.

Oregon had a scoreless drought of 5 1/2 minutes and went 8 for 29.

The Utes led 24-18 at halftime.

The Ducks started making shots in the second half and the Utes didn't. Oregon stretched the lead to nine with seven minutes left and never let Utah make a push.

Oregon made 17 of 28 shots in the second half.

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