Pac-12 Tournament opening day recap: Colorado, Stanford, Oregon on track

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

This article was written by Ryan Bafaloukos (follow him on Twitter and check out his writing at House of Sparky!)

Utah 66, Washington 61

The opening game of the day featured the No. 9 Washington Huskies against the No. 8 Utah Utes. Both teams started off slow offensively, combining for just eight points after the first four minutes of the game. The Huskies started just 2-9 from the field and finished the first half with just two assists as a team.

Utah began to pull away from the Huskies midway through the first half, aided by 13 second chance points in the opening 20 minutes. Utah outrebounded the Huskies 23-14 in the first half and led by as many as 12. Eight Utes scored in the opening half and Utah took a 34-24 lead into halftime.

Washington came out hot to start the second half, starting the half on a 17-6 run. Washington took its first lead, 41-40, on a Darin Johnson layup with 11:31 left to play in the game.

With the game tied at 60 and under a minute to play, Utah sophomore Dakari Johnson hit a corner-three to give Utah a 63-60 lead with 38 seconds remaining. After Washington freshman Nigel Williams-Goss missed the game-tying three-point attempt, Utah hit free throws to close out the game and advance.

Leading the way for the Utes was junior Delon Wright, who finished with 15 points, seven rebounds, four assists and three blocks. Jordan Loveridge added 13 points and nine rebounds and seven Utes finished with at least six points.

Williams-Goss led the Huskies with 15 points on 6-14 shooting in a losing effort. Senior C.J. Wilcox finished with 14 points and three rebounds in his final Pac-12 contest.

Utah moves on to play Arizona on Thursday in the quarterfinals.

Quotable: "We had a tremendous amount of energy in the first half, got stops, held Washington down, I believe, to 24 first half points and then we came out in the second half a little bit flat as our team has been known to do. The key, I thought, was getting back into it after a timeout. We were down 1 and made some plays, hit some shots when we needed to and we've got some big time stops." - Utah head coach Larry Krystkowiak.

For more on Utah, check out Block U. For more on Washington, head to UW Dawg Pound.

Colorado 59, USC 56

The second game of the day featured a matchup between No. 12 USC and No. 5 Colorado. Despite the Trojans winning just two conference games during the regular season, USC gave Colorado all it could handle. The Trojans were in the game all the way up to the final whistle, when Bryon Wesley's game-tying three-point attempt rimmed off to seal Colorado's 59-56 victory over the Trojans.

Colorado jumped out to an early 10-4 lead in the first half, aided by six points from guard Xavier Johnson. USC worked its way back into the game and despite shooting 1-8 from beyond the arc in the first half, trailed by just two at halftime.

The second half was a back-and-forth affair, with neither team pulling away. The game was tied at 50 with 7:01 left in the game. However, Colorado went on an 8-0 over the next four minutes to take a 58-50 lead with jus over three minutes remaining. The lead was too much for USC to rally back from.

Askia Booker the Buffaloes with 21 points on 9-17 shooting. Josh Scott added 13 points and nine rebounds and Colorado as a team outrebounded USC 38-27. The Trojans were led in scoring by Byron Wesley, who tallied 23 points on 8-15 shooting.

Colorado advances to take on California tomorrow in the quarterfinals. The Buffaloes lost to the Golden Bears by one point in overtime just four days ago.

Quotable: "Well, sometimes you've got to win ugly, and we won ugly tonight. There is no doubt about it. When you don't play your best and you're off your game with multiple guys on multiple levels and you figure out a way to win, that is a testament to your mental toughness." - Colorado head coach Tad Boyle.

For more on Colorado basketball, hit up Ralphie Report. For more on USC basketball, check out Conquest Chronicles.

Oregon 88, Oregon State 74

The evening session kicked off with an in-state battle between No. 7 Oregon and No. 10 Oregon State. The Ducks came into the Pac-12 tournament as the hottest team in the conference, and showed no signs of cooling off against Oregon State. Oregon picked up their eighth consecutive victory, topping Oregon State 88-74.

Oregon did not start off hot from the field, as the Ducks missed their first nine shots of the game and trailed Oregon State 9-3 at the first media timeout. The Ducks trailed 15-5 seven minutes into the game but went on a 12-0 to take their first lead of the contest at the 9:35 mark of the first half. Oregon led by as many as eight in the first half and took a 41-40 lead into halftime.

In the second half, the Ducks used a 17-2 run to put the game out of reach for the Beavers. Oregon State shot 61-percent from the field in the game, but missed 11 free throws and turned the ball over 15 times. Senior Angus Brandt led the Beavers with 20 points and Roberto Nelson scored 19 points in his final Pac-12 game.

The Ducks finished with four players in double figures, led by Joseph Young's 19 points on 8-11 shooting. Jason Calliste scored 17 points off the Bench for Oregon and the Ducks as a team shot a staggering 80-percent from the field in the second half.

Up next for the Ducks is a matchup Thursday night in the quarterfinals against the UCLA Bruins.

Quotable: "So the difference in the game was our 21 points off of their turnovers. I thought we got a lot of contributions from a lot of guys. Dominic Artis really played a good ballgame. Ben Carter a good ballgame, Elgin Cook off the bench, Jason off the bench. Our depth, we got 46 points off the bench with Jason leading the way with 17." - Oregon head coach Dana Altman.

For more on Oregon basketball, go to Addicted to Quack. For more on Oregon State basketball, check out Building the Dam.

Stanford 74, Washington State 63

The final game of the day featured a matchup between No. 11 Washington State and No. 6 Stanford. The Cougars battled, but in the end it was Stanford advancing with a 74-63 win Wednesday night.

Four Stanford players finished in double figures, led by Chasson Randle's 22 points on 6-11 shooting. Dwight Powell scored 16 points and Anthony Brown added 12 points and seven rebounds. Stanford shot 59-percent from the field and finished 21-24 from the free throw line.

Second chance points kept Washington State in the game, as the Cougars collected 11 offensive rebounds and turned those into 15 second chance points. DaVonte Lacy led Washington State with 25 points and senior D.J. Shelton notched a double-double, scoring 15 points and grabbing 11 rebounds.

Stanford moves on to a quarterfinal meeting with the Arizona State Sun Devils Thursday night.

Quotable: "Big win for us. Washington State came ready to play, ready to compete, and they gave us everything. I'm just really proud of our guys for stepping up and making the plays that needed to be made, up 7 at the half, the way they rallied and came out at halftime. They came out and played inspired." - Stanford head coach Johnny Dawkins.

For more on Stanford basketball, check out Rule of Tree. For more on Washington State basketball, go to Coug Center.

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