Wildcats hang on for win

Arizona almost gave it away at the end, but was able to come up big in crucial situations to defeat New Mexico State 83-76 on the road.

Arizona went into a hostile environment as an underdog and was able to come up with a win, as it defeated New Mexico State 83-76 at New Mexico State.

Arizona found itself down 10-2 early behind eight points from Wendell McKines, including two consecutive three-pointers. Kyle Fogg then ended the run with a three of his own and a dunk by Nick Johnson cut it to 12-7 at the 17:09 mark.

Solomon Hill then scored three points and Johnson had a layup that tied the game less than two minutes later. The teams basically exchanged buckets until Arizona was able to get its first lead of the game, as a three-pointer by Johnson put the Wildcats up 22-19. The lead grew with a jumper by Kyryl Natyazhko and three by Jordin Mayes, as the UA went up eight points.

Natyazhko hit another jumper a few minutes later, but the Aggies were able to get six points of their own led by another three by McKines, as Arizona led 29-25 going into the under seven minute timeout.

The lead remained four points until Jesse Perry hit a three-pointer with 3:47 left in the half, as the lead pushed to seven. However, Josiah Turner turned it over a minute or so later and Hamidu Rahman made a layup and was fouled, as the free throw cut Arizona's lead to four with 2:48 left in the first half.

Mayes matched it with a three-pointer to get the lead to 41-34, but NMSU would not let Arizonz extend the lead too much. as a Bandja Sy three cut Arizona's lead to three with less than two minutes left in the half. Arizona would later add a free throw from Turner and dunk by Perry to go up six.

However, Rahman made a layup with 24 seconds left in the first half, as Arizona went into halftime with a 44-40 lead.

NMSU scored the first eight points in the second half, led by four points by Rahman, as the Aggies went up four less than three minutes into the second half. However, Perry and Hill came right back with layups to tie the game and make sure the Aggies' run was not extended.

The teams basically exchanged buckets before a Brendon Lavender three-pointer at the 13:06 mark gave Arizona the three-point lead. That lead did not last long, however, as McKines as a three-point play to tie the game at 56.

Arizona found itself down two seconds later, but answered with a three by Fogg and a three-point play by Johnson to go up 62-58 in a hurry. NMSU tried to answer with a layup, but Johnson added another dunk off a Turner assist. Turner then had a great play in the lane for two points and the six-point lead forced the Aggies to call timeout. with 9:12 left.

Two free throws by Fogg and then two more from Turner gave Arizona its biggest lead of the game, as the Wildcats led by ten with about seven minutes left. The lead stayed at ten until about the five minute mark when McKines scored four straight points to cut the lead to 74-69. However, Arizoan just would not let the Aggies come back, as Perry hit a layup and Turner made two free throws to bring the lead back up nine.

Turner then came up with a steal and was intentionally fouled, as he made one of two free throws to bring the lead to ten with 3:50 left.

Christian Kabongo then scored seven straight points to cut the lead to 79-76 with 1:04 left. Fogg was then fouled with about 30 seconds left and missed the free throw, but Fogg was able to get his rebound and Mayes was fouled with 21 seconds left, as he hit both free throws to go up five.

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