Postgame Analysis: Arizona vs Texas Southern

Arizona was able to put the game away early against Texas Southern. Read on to find out more about the win, including the player of the game, the key moments, and more.

Arizona jumped out to an early lead and went on cruise control for most of the day in a 93-72 win over Texas Southern. Here’s a closer look at what happened:

Arizona Player of the Game:

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson – The sophomore had a great first half for the Wildcats. Hollis-Jefferson scored 16 points and grabbed seven rebounds in the first twenty minutes of the game. He came out aggressive and attacked the basket early and often during the first half. Hollis-Jefferson did pick up three quick fouls in the second half and did not see much time the rest of the night, but finished with double-double consisting of 23 points and 10 rebounds. His effort out of the gate got the Wildcats out to a big lead and kept them there.

Key Moments:

  • Arizona started the game hitting five of its first six shots over the first five minutes of the game. During that span, the Wildcats went on an 11-0 run to pull out to an early 15-2 lead.

  • The Wildcats continued to extend the lead late in the first half. T.J. McConnell got the ball underneath the Texas Southern basket, dribbled down the court, took a screen from Brandon Ashley and made a spin move in the lane for an easy layup and the 50-30 lead. A few moments later, McConnell had another nifty move, getting off a floater just as time expired and the Wildcats took a 54-33 lead into halftime.

  • With 9:30 left in the game, Stanley Johnson answered a Madarious Gibbs nifty floater with a wide open three pointer. The shot gave the Wildcats a 74-53 lead.

    Stats of the Night:

    48 - Arizona dominated the paint in the win, scoring 48 points from close range. The Wildcats attacked the lane early in the game, getting easy layups or dunks most of the time, which allowed them to build a big lead early and continue to score throughout the day.

    General Thoughts:

  • Arizona did not play well defensively in this game. Not one iota. Texas Southern shot 47-percent from the field for the game and scored 72 points. While that may concern some, it is not necessarily something that signals the falling sky for Arizona.

    It's not an excuse, but the Wildcats' poor defense is likely the result of playing an inferior team and jumping out to a big lead early. Arizona players looked bored at times and it did seem a little difficult to keep the intensity up. That being said, the focus needs to be better for the Wildcats on Saturday.

  • Offensively, each of the starters played phenomenal. The starting five shot 28-41 and were a collective 24-27 at the free throw line. Stanley Johnson tied his career high with 22 points, Brandon Ashley had 14, Kaleb Tarczewski had 13 and T.J. McConnell finished with 12.

    There was not much help from the reserves, as the Wildcats only had nine bench points in the game.

    Sean Miller Quotable:

    "What we talked a lot about during the game and after the game is we came into this tournament as a great defensive team," Miller said. "We were not that today. Not that, you know, the roof's caving in on us, but I think the point that we made is this tournament is unforgiving."

    Wildcat Quotable:

    "The defensive team we are, that was not acceptable. We won the game. That's what it's about. For us as a team, we're focusing on especially for next game our defensive stuff we do well. I think we'll clean that up."

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