KJ Simpson lifts No. 18 Buffs past Richmond in Daytona Beach

KJ Simpson lifts No. 18 Buffs past Richmond in Daytona Beach

KJ Simpson scored 23 points and No. 18 Colorado knocked off Richmond 64-59 to advance to the championship game of the Beach Bracket in the Sunshine Slam at Daytona Beach, Fla.

Tristan da Silva added 15 points and eight rebounds for the Buffaloes (4-0), who will face Florida State in Tuesday’s title game.

Jordan King recorded 23 points and seven rebounds for the Spiders (2-2). Dji Bailey added 11 points for Richmond, which will meet UNLV in the consolation game.

Bailey’s layup pulled Richmond within 56-53 with 2:36 remaining before Colorado scored six consecutive points.

The Buffaloes’ da Silva scored on a layup and Simpson hit two three throws to make it a seven-point advantage with 1:03 remaining. Then da Silva added two free throws with 32.3 seconds to make it 62-53, and the Buffaloes closed it out.

J’Vonne Hadley had four steals for Colorado, which shot 42.6 percent from the field, including 3 of 10 from 3-point range.

The Spiders made 45.1 percent of their attempts and were just 5 of 20 from behind the arc.

Mikkel Tyne hit a 3-pointer to pull Richmond within 36-34 just over five minutes into the second half before da Silva made back-to-back baskets to give Colorado a six-point advantage with 12:45 left.

King answered with consecutive baskets and Neal Quinn and Bailey followed with baskets as the Spiders took a 42-40 lead with 10:50 to go.

A short time later, Simpson drained a 3-pointer to put the Buffaloes back in front, and Cody Williams followed with a layup to make it 48-44 with 7:56 left.

Colorado later led 56-51 after two free throws by Hadley with 3:14 to play.

Simpson scored seven points to help Colorado hold a 28-25 halftime edge. King had 12 in the half for the Spiders.

The contest was tied at 13 before the Buffaloes used a 9-2 run to take a seven-point lead. A layup by Eddie Lampkin Jr. capped the spurt with 6:27 left in the half.

Quinn got the roll on a short shot as time expired in the half to leave Richmond down by three.