Sports

Colorado Holds Off Fresno State 71-64

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Nate Tomlinson dribbles on Wednesday night. (credit: Tony Harman/CUBuffs.com)

Nate Tomlinson dribbles on Wednesday night. (credit: Tony Harman/CUBuffs.com)

BOULDER, Colo. (AP) – Andre Roberson bounced back in a big way for Colorado.

Roberson tied a career-high with 21 points and had 10 rebounds, Spencer Dinwiddie scored 15 points and Colorado beat Fresno State 71-64 on Wednesday night.

Austin Dufault had 13 points for the Buffaloes (5-3), who have won 27 straight against nonconference opponents at home.

Kevin Olekaibe led Fresno State (4-5) with 26 points.

Colorado bounced back from a disappointing loss to in-state rival Colorado State last week. Roberson had his worst game of the season against the Rams with one point and 12 rebounds.

VIDEO: Watch Highlights From The Game At CUBuffs.com

He took it out on Fresno State.

“It gave me a lot of confidence to go out there and play how I expect to play,” the sophomore said. “I have high expectations for myself.”

Roberson scored 10 points early and had two 3-pointers to set the tone for Colorado.

“Andre was dialed in mentally. You could see it from the very beginning,” Colorado coach Tad Boyle said. “He was mentally into the game tonight and you could tell he was going to have a good night.”

Roberson came into the game averaging 9.7 points. He had 13 by halftime as Colorado built a 38-23 lead.

Fresno State rallied behind Olekaibe, who had 17 of his points after the break to help the Bulldogs pull to within three. They had a chance to tie, but Tyler Johnson’s 3-pointer with 4:26 left rimmed out.

“We fought back and they were on their heels and they changed,” Olekaibe said. “They were a whole different team in the second half, like we were. They didn’t want to shoot the ball and we just kept battling back and came up short.”

The Bulldogs’ modest two-game win streak was snapped.

“I thought we hung tough and guys competed until the end, but it still wasn’t good enough in terms of the outcome,” Fresno State coach Rodney Terry said.

Dinwiddie, a freshman, is averaging 15.7 points in his last three games. He hit a big 3-pointer that gave Colorado a 64-57 lead with 2:14 left.

“When you’ve got an open shot and they’re playing zone, you do a disservice to your team to pass it up,” Dinwiddie said. “When you’re wide open you’ve got to take that shot.”

Leading 10-5, Colorado took control with a 16-6 run. Roberson led the way by scoring the last 10 points of the run. He hit consecutive 3-pointers and a jumper to give the Buffaloes a 26-11 lead with 5:37 to go before intermission.

Four points by Dufault and a three-point play pushed the advantage to 33-15 with 3:51 left in the half.

The lead grew to 20 before Olekaibe scored on a tip-in and hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer to cut the Buffaloes’ lead to 15 at the break.

“We gave away 21 points in transition and we gave away the whole first half,” Olekaibe said. “If we’d have played like we did in the second half I think it would have been a different game.”

The win opened a monthlong, eight-game homestand for Colorado. It is the longest in the program’s history, and will finish with its first three games in Pac-12 play. The Buffaloes face Utah on Dec. 31 in their inaugural conference game.

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