Colorado pulls away for 93-70 win over Arkansas St

PAT GRAHAM (AP Sports Writer)
The Associated Press

BOULDER, Colo. (AP) -- Josh Scott scored 20 points and Spencer Dinwiddie added 13, helping Colorado pull away late from Arkansas State for a 93-70 win on Monday night.

The Buffs (4-1) played their second game without injured forward Xavier Johnson, but freshman George King picked up the slack by scoring 11 points as a reserve off the bench. He entered the game with three points all season.

Jaron Hopkins contributed 10 as Colorado improved to 48-7 at home under coach Tad Boyle, including 13-0 in November.

The Red Wolves (2-2) were led by Melvin Johnson III, who finished with 25 points. Brandon Reed scored all 21 of his points in the second half and Kirk Van Slyke had 15 before fouling out with 8:06 remaining.

Down by 20 points early in the second half, the Red Wolves trimmed the deficit to 60-52 on a jumper from Johnson with 12:40 remaining. That's as close as they would come as the Buffaloes gradually pulled away for their fourth straight win.

Arkansas State simply had no answer down low for a bulked-up Scott. The 245-pound sophomore forward relied on a steady diet of hook shots against anyone who tried to guard him in the lane. He finished one point away from matching his career high of 21 points, which he set last December against Hartford.

Xavier Johnson sat out again for the Buffs after being dinged up in practice last week.

The Buffaloes took a 5-3 lead on Askia Booker's scoop shot and never trailed again. They would go on to a 29-12 lead in the first half to gain some separation.

About the only thing that went wrong in the first half for Colorado was when Booker tried to dunk the ball after a steal, only to be rejected by the rim and fall hard to the floor. He quickly got back up and hustled down the floor to play defense.

Johnson (15) and Van Slyke (13) accounted for all of the Red Wolves' points in the first half as they trailed 46-28. The rest of the team was a combined 0-for-13 from the floor in the opening 20 minutes.

Colorado beat the Red Wolves 81-75 in the third round of the 1991 NIT Tournament in the only other time these two schools have met on the court.