DENTON, Texas — Lester Quinones made a putback with 32.5 seconds remaining to give Memphis the lead en route to a 59-56 win over Boise State in the NIT on Thursday night.
Memphis (18-8) advances to play Colorado State in the semifinals on Saturday.
Quinones’ offensive rebound and basket ended Boise State’s 10-0 run, and gave Memphis a 56-55 lead. After a Boise State miss, DeAndre Williams made two free throws to give the Tigers a three-point lead at 13.2.
Memphis had made just 3 of 11 free throws until Williams’ makes.
Boise State’s Derrick Alston Jr. went to the line with 3.6 seconds left, and made the first before intentionally missing the second. Landers Nolley II made 1 of 2 to regain the three-point lead and Boise State’s heave at the buzzer did not hit the rim.
D.J. Jeffries and Boogie Ellis each had 11 points for Memphis. Quinones added 10 points and seven rebounds, and Damion Baugh had six rebounds.
Mladen Armus had 12 points for the Broncos (19-9). Alston and Devonaire Doutrive each added 11 points. Boise State turned it over 13 times in the first half and finished with 15.
It will be the first time in the 83-year history of college basketball’s oldest postseason tournament that the semifinals and championship game won’t be played at Madison Square Garden.