BOULDER, Colo. — A snowstorm blowing outside wasn't nearly as chilly as Colorado coach Tad Boyle's postgame speech.
For a team hoping to make the NCAA tournament, the Buffaloes dropped a game they simply couldn't afford to drop. He let them know exactly that.
Down the hall a few paces, it was a far different speech, with Oregon State coach Craig Robinson praising his squad for finally playing the way he envisioned all season.
For a team going, well, nowhere, it's exactly what it needed heading into the Pac-12 Conference tournament next week in Las Vegas.
Eric Moreland scored 17 points and Roberto Nelson added 15, helping the Beavers snap a five-game skid by holding off Colorado 64-58 on Saturday.
"I tried to do a little reverse psychology," Robinson said. "I told them how hard it was to play here, hoping that they would raise the level of play."
They certainly did that.
It was the first-ever win in Boulder for the Beavers (14-17, 4-14 Pac-12). They were 0-6 all-time before Nelson closed out a tight game on a layup with 15 seconds remaining, sending the crowd heading for the exits.
So incensed was Boyle by this listless performance, he grabbed the microphone soon after the game — it was senior night and he was going to talk anyway — and apologized to the capacity crowd. Boyle really isn't sure what his team needs right now — kind words? A hug? — but hopes this contest serves as a reality check. The Buffs (20-10, 10-8) were on a high after knocking off a ranked Oregon team two days ago, only to be brought back down to earth.
"The reality is that we just lost to a team that was 3-14, coming into our building, with a great crowd, with a snowstorm blowing on us, on senior day," said Boyle, whose team will be the No. 5 seed and face No. 12 Oregon State again on Wednesday in the Pac-12 tournament. "We got beat. That's the reality. I don't know if we need a rah-rah speech, but we better figure it out, because guess what? The regular season is over with. It's now win or go home.
"There are no guarantees of tomorrow."
For a second straight game, Colorado played without Andre Roberson, who is sidelined with a viral illness.
With no Roberson in the middle, the Beavers outrebounded the Buffs 40-32.
Nelson leads Oregon State in scoring but was shut out in the first half, only to erupt in the final 20 minutes. Moreland picked up the slack, even grabbing 10 rebounds for good measure.