Arizona Co-Players of the Game:
Stanley Johnson – It started out looking like a rough night for Johnson as he headed to halftime with two fouls, no points, and no rebounds. The second half was more his speed and he burned Utah for 18 points and 10 rebounds for a double-double in the second half alone. It was a big time performance in a big game.
T.J. McConnell – The game wasn’t won on just Johnson’s shoulders. McConnell kept the Wildcats in the game with 12 first half points, hitting six of his seven shots and dishing out two assists to big men down low. In the second half, he only added four points, but picked up four more assists as he allowed his team to open things up.Key Moments:
The timeout didn’t seem to work, as Utah opened up a quick 10-2 lead with the help of several low-percentage shots falling. Arizona didn’t help itself either, shooting just one of seven from the field with two turnovers during a six minute stretch to open the game.
Stats of the Night:
17 - For the second straight game, the Arizona Wildcats dominated the offensive glass and the rebounding margin in general. Arizona came away with 17 offensive rebounds and held the Utes to just four. Overall, the Wildcats grabbed 40 boards, while Utah managed to grab just 19.
Coming into the game, Utah was averaging 8.7 rebounds more than their opponents and came away being outrebounded by 21.
Pitts was only one for three with a layup in traffic, but his contributions came entirely on the defensive end of the court. He was one of many that were responsible for shutting down Delon Wright and it was a breakout game for him and his defensive ability.
Sean Miller Quotable:
”We’ve been the hunted now for two and a half years,” Sean Miller said. “Any loss that we’ve had here on the road, the court has been stormed. Every time that we play against a team, there has been some streak that is on the line. We have to, as as staff, be aware that it can’t be a burden. You know if we win, you’re relieved, and if we lose, it’s like ‘Can you believe we lost? We stink’.
”Where I’ve been disappointed is that there have been a few instances where we didn’t play with enough effort or intensity. Today, we played with effort and intensity and that byproduct of that was a great performance.”
”It all starts with defense for me.,” Stanley Johnson said. “In the first half, I got two cheap ones and that is on me. I didn’t like it at all, but it happens. Through the half, we were winning and T.J. was playing great.
"You have to keep your head in the game and not worry about the fouls, that’s what Coach Miller told me. I think I saw a few creases and gaps, but it was early in the game, so we didn’t want to push it too much.”