BOULDER, Colo. (AP) — Colorado’s Wesley Gordon didn’t attempt a shot in the first half on Sunday.
Apparently, that didn’t bother him much.
He continued to hit the boards and run the floor, providing a spark wherever he could. His offense finally came around, too.
Gordon finished with nine points and 15 rebounds, Josh Scott added 18 points and eight rebounds and Colorado beat Northern Colorado 82-52 for its fifth straight victory.
“I can affect the game in more ways than just scoring. I just focus on different aspects of the game,” Gordon said. “We don’t really have trouble scoring too much, so it’s not that big of a deal.”
The junior finally got some looks in the second half. He went 3 of 5 from the field and 3 of 4 from the line, something coach Tad Boyle said he wants to see more of.
“If Wesley doesn’t get a touch in the first half we have to make sure he gets some,” Boyle said. “Part of it’s on coaches and the guards. The other parts are Wesley.”
The Buffs put the Bears out of reach with a 15-0 burst over five minutes to take a 50-19 lead with 17:34 remaining. Tory Miller started the run with a 3-point play late in the first half and Scott scored eight of the next 12 points, including dunk off a lob from Thomas Akyazili.
George King added 13 points and Josh Fortune had nine for Colorado (5-1), which never trailed despite 18 turnovers and cold shooting down the stretch.
“At times, we had lapses,” Scott said, “but I’m pretty proud of what we did for 40 minutes.”
Anthony Johnson paced Northern Colorado (1-5) with 18 points and Jordan Wilson added 12. The Bears shot 32 percent from the field in their fourth consecutive loss.
Northern Colorado shot just 61 percent from the free throw line on 18 attempts and didn’t hit its first 3 until midway through the second half.
“Nothing was falling,” Wilson said. “But we have to help our offense with stops.”
Colorado went 3 for 4 from the perimeter to go up 11-2 in the opening minutes and finished 10 of 23 from 3-point range. The Buffaloes outrebounded the Bears 48-29.
Northern Colorado: Cameron Michael sat out for the second game in a row with a concussion. He is the Bears’ second-leading scorer, averaging 16.8 points.
Colorado: Tory Miller scored seven points on Sunday after he was reprimanded by the Pac-12 for his behavior in Wednesday’s 81-70 win over Air Force. Miller bit the Falcons’ Hayden Graham on the shoulder as the two wrestled over a loose ball in the second half. After video replay, Miller was ejected from the game.
Late in the game, Gordon missed a free throw that would’ve given him his first double-double of the season. When asked if he knew he was that close, Gordon shrugged his shoulders and joked “I would have made the free throw if I would have known that.”
Colorado coach Tad Boyle, who coached the Bears from 2006-10, went to 2-0 against his former team.
“It’s tough to get your tail kicked by your old boss,” said Bears coach B.J. Hill, who was an assistant under Boyle.
Northern Colorado: will travel to UC-Riverside on Thursday.
Colorado: hosts Fort Lewis on Wednesday.