Buffs earn bite of Big Apple

It was the toughest test yet, and the Colorado Buffaloes proved to be up to the challenge Tuesday night at the Coors Events Center grinding out a hard-fought 81-74 victory over Kent State in the quarterfinals of the NIT.

Colorado will play the winner of today's Alabama-Miami game in New York City on march 29 and is two wins away from an NIT championship.

They have made it this far on the back of Alec Burks, who scored 25 points with 10 rebounds for his fifth double-double of the year. It is the third consecutive game in which he has scored at least 25 points.

The Buffs struggled with Kent State's size and athleticism in the post. Justin Green, the Mid-American Conference Player of the Year, led the Golden Flashes with 20 points and nearly did enough to lead his team to its third straight road win in the tournament as a No. 7 seed.

"You have to really honor Kent State. I have a lot of respect for their coaching staff and their players," CU coach Tad Boyle said. "They've gone coast to coast and won two road games. They're not intimidated by anybody."

Colorado capped a remarkable season at the events center going 18-2 in Boulder this year. Senior Marcus Relphorde scored 17 points to complement Burks. Senior Cory Higgins had 13 after a slow start and freshman Andre Roberson finished with another double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds.

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