Illinois led by 16 at halftime only to watch Colorado rip off a 21-2 run in the second to grab the lead. The Illini looked desperate until Paul and Richardson coolly knocked down their shots to put Illinois ahead 48-44.
Four free throws by Paul eventually put the game away for the Illini (23-12), who will play No. 2 seed Miami on Sunday.
Paul led Illinois with 17 points. Askia Booker scored14 points for Colorado (21-12).
More Sports Headlines
Seahawks' Wilson has gotten hot at right time Silvertips acquire defenseman Martin from Blades Seahawks begin life without tight end Graham Report: Cardinals running back Johnson has fractured tibia Shead to remain starter at right corner for Seahawks Russell helps No. 2-ranked Western Washington vie for national soccer title Ravens return blocked kick for TD as time expires to beat Browns Mariners interested in free-agent outfielder Aoki
Our new comment system is not supported in IE 7. Please upgrade your browser here.