The Colorado men's basketball team will come home from Italy having enjoyed a successful business trip. But the Buffaloes also ended that trip on a losing note.

A bad start in the finale of the four-game trip of exhibitions on Wednesday doomed the Buffs from the start, as coach Tad Boyle's club dropped a 72-64 decision against Novipiu Junior Castle in Vercelli.

CU trailed 24-10 at the end of the first quarter and 46-22 at halftime. Boyle, as expected, used his fourth different starting lineup of the trip, yet Wednesday's starters went a combined 13-for-43 from the field. Overall the Buffs shot just .323, their lowest mark on the trip, while going 5-for-20 at the 3-point line. All of that damage was done by George King, who went 5-for-11 on 3-pointers while finishing with 22 points.

That total also was the best by a Buffs player throughout the four-game Italy trip. King also grabbed five rebounds, finishing the trip with a team-leading rebound average of 7.3 per game.

CU outscored Novipiu Junior Castle 42-26 after halftime, but the deficit proved too much to overcome. The Buffs' comeback chances weren't helped by another rough effort at the free throw line (15-for-29).

Freshman point guard McKinley Wright was the only other CU player to reach double figures in points, though his 12 points and three assists were offset by five turnovers in 24 minutes. Freshman Tyler Bey was solid off the bench, going 5-for-6 at the free throw line before finishing with nine points and a team-leading six rebounds.


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Pat Rooney: rooneyp@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/prooney07

Novipiu Junior Castle 72, Colorado 64

At Vercelli, Italy

Colorado

Schwartz 0-2 0-0 0, Miller-Stewart 0-5 0-2 0, Siewert 1-6 0-0 2, King 7-19 3-7 22, M. Wright 5-11 2-3 12, Bey 2-4 5-6 9, Brown 2-4 1-2 5, N. Wright 2-5 4-5 8, Collier 0-7 1-2 1, Walton 2-2 1-2 5. Totals 21-65 17-29 64.

Novipiu Junior Castle

Denegri 3-11 2-2 9, Tomassini 3-7 0-0 7, Martinoni 5-7 0-0 11, Bellan 7-10 2-2 19, Marcius 3-6 2-2 8, Ielmini 0-0 0-0 0, Bancher 0-0 1-2 1, Valentini 1-6 0-0 3, Blizzard 4-4 0-0 10, Severini 2-6 0-1 4, Cattapan 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 28-58 7-9 72.

Score by quarters:

Colorado 10 12 19 23—64

Novipiu J.C.24 22 15 11—72

3-point field goals — Colorado 5-20 (Schwartz 0-1, Siewert 0-4, King 5-11, M. Wright 0-1, Bey 0-1, Brown 0-1, Collier 0-1); Novipiu 9-28 (Denegri 1-7, Tomassini 1-3, Martinoni 1-3, Bellan 3-6, Iemini 0-1, Valentini 1-5, Blizzard 2-2, Severini 0-1). Total fouls — Colorado 10, Novipiu Junior Castle 25. Rebounds — Colorado 42 (Bey 6); Novipiu Junior Castle 39 (Marcius 7). Assists — Colorado 11 (Siewert, M. Wright 3); Novipiu Junior Castle 18 (Valentini 5).