Postgame Analysis: Stanford

The Arizona Wildcats defeated the Stanford Cardinal on Wednesday night. Read on for an analysis of the victory, including the player of the game.

The Arizona Wildcats fought their way back from a ten point deficit to come away with the victory Wednesday night. Arizona won 73-66 for the 20th win of the season. Here's an analysis of what happened:

Player of the Game:

Mark Lyons – The senior was a factor for Arizona all night long. Lyons shot lights out for the contest and took over for the Wildcats when it mattered. He finished the night with 25 points and 6 assists to go along with two rebounds and two steals.

Key Moments:

  • Stanford opened the game on a 10-0 run, fueled by two Aaron Bright three-pointers. The Wildcats battled back, going on a 7-2 run of their own and keeping the game close. It was key to the victory that Arizona was able to keep the game within reach.

  • With just under two minutes left in the first half, Lyons swished a three-pointer from the top of the key. It cut the deficit to just three after the Cardinal had been leading by more than two possessions for most of the half. Jordin Mayes followed it up with a fast break layup, cutting the lead to just one at halftime.

  • Nine minutes into the second half of the game, Arizona trailed by three and needed a spark. Lyons provided it as he swiped the ball from John Gage and had the court all to himself. He threw it down and ignited the crowd, as the Wildcats were only down by one.

  • Arizona used a 9-0 run late in the game to pull ahead 58-54 with three minutes remaining. Lyons provided offense, but was also helped by Angelo Chol, who scored six points in the game and four during the run.

  • Stanford could not get the deficit any smaller and Arizona was able to pull away for the victory. With just over a minute remaining, Solomon Hill drove down the lane and slammed home a dunk, sealing the game for the Wildcats.

    General Thoughts:

    Arizona's offense was bad to start the game and it really hurt the team. Slow starts aren't ideal and they can make it hard for the players to get in the flow of the game. Once the Wildcats found some rhythm on the offensive end, it was an uphill battle.

    Arizona's defense was good for the most part, but it really missed the presence that Grant Jerrett brought to the paint. Dwight Powell had a great game for the Cardinal and there were times during the game that it seemed as if Arizona couldn't stop him. Ashley was tasked with guarding him, but fouled out in limited minutes. Jerrett's presence could have helped on the defensive end.

    In addition, the Wildcats were able to get quality minutes from Chol off the bench. He finished with a career-high eight rebounds and was instrumental in Arizona's late push as he helped slow down Powell and found good offensive looks.

    Wildcat Quotable:

    "At the end of the game, that's when great plays are made," Lyons said. "Me and Solomon made great plays at the end game, a lot of us made great defensive plays to open the game up. You're really not a good player if you don't like it in crunch time."

    Sean Miller Quotable:

    "Mark not only scored tonight, he made his teammates better," Miller said. "His six assists were much closer to eight or nine. He ran the team and led the team, and really let the game come to him."

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