AP — Allonzo Trier scored 23 points, Ryan Anderson had 17 points and 11 rebounds, and No. 15 Arizona held on to beat Colorado 82-78 on Thursday in the Pac-12 tournament quarterfinals.
Arizona (25-7) overwhelmed Colorado in the first half before laboring through most of the second.
The third-seeded Wildcats allowed the Buffaloes to cut a 22-point lead to two on George King’s 3-pointer with 3 seconds left.
Gabe York followed with two free throws to close it out, sending Arizona into Friday night’s semifinals against No. 8 Oregon.
Colorado (22-11) clawed its way back from a huge hole by hitting the offensive glass (25), but couldn’t overcome its shaky shooting. The fifth-seeded Buffaloes shot 34 percent and made 5 of 19 from 3-point range, leaving their NCAA Tournament fate in the hands of the selection committee.
King had 22 points, and Josh Scott finished with 16 points and 13 rebounds for Colorado, which had 26 second-chance points.
Colorado opened the Pac-12 tournament with a dominating performance, beating Washington State 80-56 behind King’s 21-point night.
That earned the Buffaloes a shot at the Wildcats, who were itching for a rematch after losing in Boulder on Feb. 24.
Arizona rallied from a 10-point, second-half deficit in that game, but couldn’t make the plays down the stretch or stop Scott, who had a season-high 26 points.
The Wildcats turned the rematch into a rout from the opening tip.
Smothering the Buffaloes defensively, Arizona set up easy baskets in transition while opening with a 14-2 run, setting off a chant of “U of A!”
The Wildcats kept it rolling, building a 37-20 halftime lead behind York.
The senior closed out his home career by setting a school record with nine 3-pointers and 32 points. He kept pouring in shots at what’s become McKale Center North, scoring 11 points in the first half in front of the pro-Arizona crowd.
Colorado had more turnovers than field goals — nine to eight — and missed all six of its 3-point attempts.
The Buffaloes found their rhythm a bit in the second half, gaining a surge a momentum midway through while cutting into Arizona’s lead.
Trier stemmed the tide briefly with a couple of athletic shots in transition, but Colorado fought back one more time, pulling to 64-57 on Scott’s three-point play with 5 minutes left.
The Buffaloes couldn’t make it all the way back, though, and will have to hope their resume is good enough to get an NCAA bid.