Charleston, SC, United States (4E Sports) – Askia Booker tallied a career-high 19 points as Colorado advanced to the final of the Charleston Classic with a 60-58 victory over No. 16 Baylor Friday at TD Bank Arena.
The Buffaloes (3-0) got their revenge against the Bears (3-1), who eliminated them from the NCAA Tournament last March, 80-63.
It was Colorado’s first win over a ranked team since beating No. 23 UNLV last year.
Colorado will face the winner between St. John’s and Murray State in Sunday’s championship game.
Booker scored 16 of his output in the first half, Spencer Dinwiddie was the other Colorado player in double digits with 11 while Andre Roberson had seven points and 13 rebounds.
Baylor was led by Cory Jefferson’s 17 while Pierre Jackson, who scored 31 against Boston College, added 12.
Colorado was woeful from the foul line, making only four of 18 attempts, but Booker hit a freebie to give the Buffaloes a two-point cushion with 11.6 seconds to play.
Baylor had a chance to tie the game but A.J. Walton missed difficult layup from the right side. Roberson was fouled on the rebound play with 3.1 seconds left but missed two foul shots.
The Bears got possession with 0.2 remaining and Austin caught a lob pass just above the free throw line but missed a potential game-tying jumper at the buzzer.
The Charleston Classic is an eight-team, 12-game early-season college basketball tournament played in Charleston, South Carolina. First held in 2008, the event takes place the weekend before Thanksgiving at TD Arena.
This year, the event features Auburn, Baylor, Boston College, Colorado, Charleston, Dayton, Murray State and St. John’s.