Postgame Analysis: UA vs. CSU
Player of the Game: #21 Brandon Ashley – The freshman was a frequent face at the free throw line for the Wildcats. Ashley seemed to quietly have a big game, making eight of twelve free throws (a game-high), and grabbing eight rebounds. He finished with twelve points and two blocks, which was the best all-around effort on the floor for the Wildcats. Key Moments: With 4:23 left in the first half, Jordin Mayes took a pass from Kevin Parrom and nailed a big three-pointer that capped a mini-run for the Wildcats. Over the minute and a half, Mayes scored eight consecutive points and gave Arizona the first lead of the night. Right before halftime, Nick Johnson hit a three-pointer from the corner that gave Arizona a 41-39 lead. On defense, Mayes forced a five second closely guarded violation and Ashley got a bucket and the foul with just seconds remaining. Ashley missed the free throw, but Arizona took the momentum into the locker room and never relinquished the lead. At the 7:37 mark in the second half, Solomon Hill drilled a three-pointer assisted by Mark Lyons. A minute later, Parrom cut across the lane, drawing defenders before dishing to a wide open Lyons, who nailed a three-point jumper. It gave Arizona a 65-57 lead and the Wildcats never looked back. Thoughts: The game was sloppy on both ends of the court. Arizona allowed Charleston Southern to shoot too many uncontested three-pointers and was out-rebounded 34-31 despite having a serious size advantage. Even though the Wildcats didn't play their best basketball, they still managed to win the game. It seems as if this is the type of game that Arizona would have lost last season and it goes as a positive that the Wildcats were able to pull it out and win the opener. Sean Miller Quotable: "We screwed a number of things up," said Sean Miller. "A lot of times, you do it in November and you hope you can learn the lesson after a win. Two or three times, we were supposed to switch a ball screen when it was guards and we didn't. "It was disappointing, but we'll be able to go over the film and talk and teach. That's what this time of year is all about; learn from your mistakes and don't do them again." Wildcat Quotable: "My teammates are great guys and great scorers," Mark Lyons said when asked about finishing the game with six assists and no turnovers. "Everybody knows we are talented and they make my job easier. "Giving me the ball in the right positions, I expect them to make shots and everybody expects them to make shots. I have great group of guys with me. I have a lot of trust in them and they have trust in me. Honestly, it's all on them and they just help me out."