Arizona moved to 5-1 on the season, dropping Friday night's contest with Providence 69-65. Here's a closer look at what happened:
Player of the Game:
Ryan Anderson - The senior forward did everything he could in order to help the Wildcats win, but it wasn't enough. Anderson finished with a game-high 27 points and 12 rebounds for his third double-double of the season. The forward was the most explosive player on the court and it showed as he bullied his way inside and looked like an unstoppable force at times.
* With 10:04 remaining in the second half, Kris Dunn picked up his fourth foul of the game. It forced him to sit and the Wildcats were able to use it to their advantage, jumping out to a seven point lead on a Gabe York long ball with six minutes left in the game.
* Dunn returned to the game at the five minute mark and proceded to breathe life back into the Friars. The guard had been quiet for most of the night, but showed up when his team needed him the most, trading baskets with the Wildcats as the clock wound down. With Providence down by four, Dunn scored ten straight points to Arizona's two over the final minutes of the game.
* The final straw for Arizona was the last turnover of the night. Parker Jackson-Cartwright got free of his defender, but threw a pass right to Junior Lomomba as the clock wound down. Lomomba found Dunn in the open court for an easy dunk and a four point lead that sealed the game.
Stat of the Game:
21 - It was fitting that the Jackson-Cartwright turnover cost the Wildcats the game as Arizona had an atrocious amount of giveaways in the game. The team did better with the ball in the second half, only turning it over nine times, but that is still the goal for an entire game, not a single half. If there was a single reason that the Wildcats lost, it was turnovers.
I didn't think that Arizona could have played worse than it did against Santa Clara, but it was pretty close tonight. The Wildcats aren't a good team right now and the players who need to step up, aren't doing so (except for Anderson). Allonzo Trier still looks lost at times and the offense is severely lacking a go-to scorer that would have been useful in this loss.
The one aspect of the game that is frightening for the Wildcats is the lack of defense. Providence shot 50 percent from the field and towards the end of the game, Dunn was able to get any shot he wanted and there was nothing that anyone could do about it. Arizona doesn't have a lock-down defender that could have shut him down and as the season goes on and March goes closer, that may be the Achilles heel for this team.