Julien McCollum scored 20 points and grabbed 11 rebounds and the Widefield defense clamped down in the fourth quarter Thursday night en route to a 57-39 victory over Broomfield in the Class 4A state semifinals.
Widefield (25-1), a No. 1 seed, will play defending champ Abraham Lincoln (22-5) for the 4A crown at 6 p.m. on Saturday at the University of Colorado Coors Events Center.
Clinging to a 37-35 lead to start the fourth quarter, Widefield took charge on defense, forcing turnovers and getting transition baskets on the other end.
Dion Vaughn, who finished with 10 points and 10 rebounds, and Chris Ashe began the trend early in the quarter.
Following Ashe's basket with 5:56 to play, Widefield led 41-35.
Widefield then extended its lead to 44-37 with 2:47 left on a basket by McCollum, who had 7 points in the fourth.
The play began a 14-1 Widefield run to end the game.
Mel James scored 14 points for Widefield, while Nick Tomsick scored a game-best 22 points for Broomfield (23-4).
The Eagles, a No. 2 seed from the Northern League, scored only 4 points in the fourth quarter after staying with the more athletic Widefield club for the first three periods.
The Eagles, which lost for the third straight year in the semifinals after winning the 4A title in 2004, shot 26 percent from the field, converting 14 of 54 attempts. They were only successful on 4 of 19 3-point tries.
Widefield, champions of the Colorado Springs Metro League, shot 40 percent from the field.
The Gladiators, winners of 25 straight after losing the season opener, led 25-19 at the intermission.
Sean Farrior, who had a game-high six steals to go with his 6 points, hit an NBA-distance 3-pointer at the buzzer to end the first half.
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