Arizona defeated Miami 69-50 on Sunday night. Read on for numerous notes and observations on how the Wildcats got it done.
The competition stepped up a notch at the Diamond Head Classic for Arizona
, but the Wildcats were just as dominating in their 69-50 victory over Miami
on Sunday night. The win keeps Arizona perfect at 11-0 with the competition becoming even more difficult in Tuesday's championship game against San Diego State.
Many expected this to be a relatively tough test for UA, but the Wildcats were able to slowly extend the lead as the game progressed. The Hurricanes battled early, but Arizona went on a run down the stretch of the first half that allowed the Wildcats to separate themselves from Miami and extend the lead to double digits by halftime.
Mark Lyons paced the Wildcats again with a 19-point night. The senior knocked down seven out of 12 shot attempts and went 3-fot-7 from long range. Lyons continuously pushed the pace for UA and his assertive style of play put the Hurricanes on their heels defensively and never allowed them to get comfortable.
Forward Kevin Parrom led the charge off the bench, finishing the game with 11 points on 4-for-8 shooting. Parrom's energy was a big factor when the game was close in the first half. The senior knocked down shots from the outside, grabbed eight rebounds, dished out two assists and collected three steals. Sunday's effort was one of the better ones put forth by the forward this season and he provided a much needed offensive punch from the second unit.
Nick Johnson had another strong outing, finishing the game with 12 points. The sophomore was very efficient shooting the ball, connecting on five out of eight shot attempts from the floor. Johnson also grabbed five rebounds as he continues to find ways to contribute outside of scoring.
Freshman center Kaleb Tarczewski scored eight points, but it was his 13 rebounds that stood out more than anything else. The 7-footer dominated the boards, putting his big frame to use against a team that presents plenty of size along the interior. Tarczewski was aggressive on the glass and it allowed UA to dominate the rebounding portion of the contest.
Once again, Arizona's defense was suffocating and prevented the Hurricanes from getting into any sort of flow on the offensive end of the floor. UA held Miami to just 36.5 percent shooting for the game and just 26.3 percent from long range.
UA owned the glass, out-rebounding Miami 44-19 for the game. Two Hurricanes – Durand Scott and Kenny Kadji - tied for the team lead in rebounds with four, while four Wildcats grabbed five rebounds or more.
One area UA still struggles in is staying consistent in protecting the ball. The Wildcats turned the ball over 16 times and played a little erratic in spurts. The Hurricanes stole possession 14 times while coughing it up just nine.
Fortunately for the Wildcats, their solid shooting (combined with Miami's struggling offense) was more than enough to make up for their shortcomings. Arizona shot 48.1 percent from the floor; including 44.4 percent from beyond the three-point arc.