Colorado State Advances After Domination Of Virginia In First Four Matchup

In the electrified atmosphere inside University of Dayton Arena, the stage was set for a memorable clash in a First Four game to start the NCAA Tournament, featuring a matchup of two 10 seeds. The Virginia Cavaliers, known for their stoic defense and methodical offense, faced off against the Colorado State Rams, celebrated for their high-flying, fast-paced play. This encounter, a battle of contrasting styles, heightened the anticipation ahead of tip-off.

After shooting just one of six from the field to start the game, the Rams began to assert their dominance. Led by Joel Scott, Colorado State quickly established a lead through scoring efficiency, shooting an impressive 50% from the field in the first half. In contrast, the Cavaliers struggled, managing just 17% from the field in the first half, as they found it challenging to penetrate the Rams’ stifling defense. The dynamic offense of Colorado State, fueled by plays from Clifford Nique and Isaiah Stevens, seemed unstoppable. Scott finished the first half with 10 of the Rams 27 points.

After a tight game early, CSU finished the first half on a 9-0 run to take a 27-14 lead into the locker room at halftime. This early lead underscored their effective strategy and execution on both ends of the court. The Cavs went scoreless in the final 9:20 of the 1st half.

The second half started the same with the Cabs going another three minutes without a score. By this time the Rams had pulled out to a 21 point lead. Colorado State’s shooting efficiency in the 2nd half soared to 61% from the field, while the Cavaliers improved to 33%, still unable to significantly close the gap.

Despite the Cavaliers attempts to mount a comeback, Colorado State would only let them draw within 15 points as they had an answer to every Virginia attempt at a momentum swing. Scott’s outstanding performance, leading the Rams with 23 points, played a critical role in their victory. Clifford also added 10 second half points.

As the final buzzer sounded, the scoreboard detailed a game dominated by the Rams, with a final score of Colorado State 67, Virginia 42. This victory for the Rams, showcasing their blend of speed, agility, and tactical intelligence along with remarkable shooting accuracy, advanced them to the first round of the NCAA Tournament, setting up a matchup against Texas in Charlotte on Thursday.

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