Alabama and Colorado put on a show at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night in the NIT semifinals, going down to the wire after the Buffaloes came storming back in the second half. Down by as many as 10 in the second, Colorado took over, snatching the lead momentarily before both teams traded ties and lead changes over the final moments. With 13 seconds to go, Alabama’s Trevor Releford drove baseline and hit a lay-in to give the Crimson Tide 62-61 lead.
Colorado was all out of sorts on its final possession after calling a timeout to draw up one final play for the win. Out of the timeout, the Buffaloes looked confused, spending time dribbling around the perimeter before forcing up a long, contested shot at the buzzer that never had a chance. Thanks to Releford’s go-ahead bucket, Alabama escaped and advanced to the NIT Championship with a 62-61 win.
JaMychal Green scored a game-high 22 points for Alabama, but fouled out with just over two minutes to go. Releford was also in double-figures with 13 points for the Crimson Tide. Alec Burks finished with a team-high 20 points for Colorado in the loss.
Alabama moves on to face Wichita State, winners of the earlier semifinal, in the NIT Championship on Thursday.
Tuesday, March 29th:
Semifinal 2: No. 4 Wichita State defeats No. 2 Washington State, 75-44
Semifinal 1: No. 1 Colorado vs. No. 1 Alabama, 62-61
Thursday, March 31st:
NIT Championship Game: No. 1 Alabama vs. No. 4 Wichita State 7 p.m. ET, ESPN2