First week ends with scrimmage

The Cats are just a week into the season and played like it in their scrimmage Saturday afternoon. Play was sloppy, but talent abounds on this team. When it was all said and done, the three juniors, along with Andre Iguodala, had the biggest days.

"We still need to get more consistent," Lute Olson said during the scrimmage.

The first half was wide open and freewheeling. Things were close early, before a 10-0 run gave the white squad a 17-6 lead. Salim Stoudamire sparked the run with two three-pointers, while Isaiah Fox and Andre Iguodala connected on four free throws.

Stoudamire had a solid day. He finished with 22 points on 8-15 shooting. He did not force the three-point shot and for the most part settled for good looks. He was a solid 3-6 from behind the arc, and also dished out four assists.

Another run extended the white lead. Then the blue got it within seven, 17-10, but white answered with eight in a row. The white got balanced scoring as Iguodala, Kirk Walters, Mustafa Shakur and Fox each had field goals.

Shakur played well, but was not dominant. He has a tendency to disappear for stretches of time where he lets the veterans take over. Shakur is at his best when he is pushing the pace, getting the team out in transition. He attacks the basket effectively and has a knack for picking up the foul. Officially he had 13 points and three assists, but also had a handful of bad passes.

The white squad continued to pull away, leading by as much as 18 before Chris Rodgers and Channing Frye brought the blue squad back. Down the stretch the white squad went on a 14-6 run and were within 10 with 1:30 left in the half. Rodgers scored half the points during the run, while Frye added five points. The white surged in the final minute, outscoring the blue 5-2 and took the first 20:00 53-42. Both Frye and Fox had excellent days. Frye scored 23 points and ripped down 16 rebounds. Frye was very aggressive, working hard on both ends of the court. Fox was on his game as well. Fox put up 24 points and 19 rebounds. He was solid on the offensive glass and Olson seemed impressed with both post players.

The coaching staff mixed up the line-ups for the second half. The team went with a "starting line-up" of Shakur, Stoudamire, Iguodala, Fox and Frye wearing the white jerseys.

This edition of the white team had trouble shaking the seemingly inferior blue team. A Matt Brase transition bucket had the blue team within one, 6-5, before the white rattled off a 14-4 run, sparked by six straight points by Stoudamire to cap the run.

From there Hassan Adams caught fire and exerted himself more. After just three points in the first half, the sophomore wing had 12 points in the second frame. He scored six of the blue team's next eight points and helped them keep pace with the white. Adams went down early in the scrimmage, and although he returned a few minutes later, it took him quite some time to get his aggressiveness back. Adams is at his best when he attacks the glass. He is an effective scorer inside, despite being just 6-4. He got a number of points on second chances and should help make up for a lack of inside depth.

Superior inside play from Fox and Frye allowed the white to pull out to a 47-31 lead, but Rodgers and Adams would not let their team go quietly. The two each added four points, while Brase converted a three-point play and the blue were within five, 47-42 at the conclusion of an 11-0 run.

That is as close as the blue would get. Over the final 3:30, the white outscored the blue 11-2 and held on for a 60-44 win.

Iguodala continued to show the talent that could make him the most improved player in the conference. He was dominant as a scorer and a rebounder, putting up 32 points and 17 rebounds. Nine of his rebounds came on the offensive end and greatly aided his scoring totals. Even more impressive was the fact that of his 10 field goals, just one was a three pointer. Iguodala scored inside, mid-range and in transition.

After a great game last Saturday, Beau Muhlbach came back down to earth. The talented walk-on went 0-8 from the field and did not get the open looks that he benefited from last weekend.

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