11:59 PM ET, March 17, 2004
McArthur Court, Eugene, Oregon
EUGENE, Ore. (AP) -- Luke Jackson wasn't ready for the season to end, and his unforgettable performance ensured that Oregon would play on.Jackson scored all but two of Oregon's final 33 points, leading the Ducks back from 18 points down in the second half in a 77-72 overtime victory against Colorado in a first-round NIT game Wednesday night.Jackson, who had 40 points overall, including 29 straight at one point, scored 14 in the last 4:47 of regulation, tying the game 61-61 on a 3-pointer with 20 seconds left. He followed that with 14 more in overtime, 11 from the free throw line."We've created our own March Madness here in Eugene," Oregon coach Ernie Kent said. "(Jackson's) performance was the best I've seen anywhere."David Harrison led the Buffaloes (18-11) with 26 points and 12 rebounds.Oregon's rally began with a dunk off a steal by Jackson at the 15:57 mark to spark a 17-1 run. It erased a 48-30 deficit to pull within 49-47 with 7:57 to play.Colorado, meanwhile, went almost 12 minutes between field goals, and the once hot-shooting Buffaloes missed on eight straight attempts before a putback by Harrison with six minutes left made it 52-47.From there, Jackson took over for Oregon (16-12), making three 3-pointers and going 15-for-16 from the free throw line."You know, you get into a good rhythm and you just go with it," said Jackson, whose career high is 42 points. "I'm just happy we're moving on."The only other player to score for the Ducks in the final 11 minutes was Andre Joseph, who converted a pair of free throws late in overtime."Forty points is an amazing number to hit," Harrison said of Jackson. "That final (3-pointer), I was dumbfounded. That didn't hit anything but the net. He's just a great player."Colorado jumped to a 9-4 lead in the game's first three minutes, but fell behind 14-11 following a 10-2 Oregon run capped by a 3-pointer by Aaron Brooks.But the Buffaloes answered by scoring 12 straight. They would extend their lead to 45-30 going into the break as Chris Copeland hit a pair of 3-pointers in the final 45 seconds."We were definitely on cloud nine going into halftime," Harrison said. "But you definitely have to hand it to Oregon, they didn't want this to be their last game."
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