Stoudamire does it again

What do you do on your last home game of the season? In Lute Olson's case he let the big guns fire and shoot. Once again the Wildcats were led to victory by Channing Frye and Salim Stoudamire. Coming off a milestone Thursday night against Oregon, Stoudamire adds another milestone against the Oregon State Beavers. He hit more three pointers in one game than any other Wildcat in history (surpassing Jason Gardner).

Arizona jumped out big going on a 14-0 run in the early stages in the game. Frye was able to knock down six points in a row while Stoudamire was quiet…at least for now. The Cats were playing with hard, aggressively, and with heart for their final home game. A beautiful spin move by Mustafa Shakur got him inside and made the score 16-7 in favor of Arizona. Ivan Radenovic hit a three from behind the arch and put the home team up by 12 points.

Hassan Adams attempted a spectacular backwards dunk but it fell out. Oregon State then went on a fast break and outnumbered Stoudamire three to one and cutting Arizona's lead down to only three points. Then it seemed as if no one from either side could score for a while until Frye landed a dunk making it 25-20. Stoudamire followed up hitting his second long distance field goal of the game. Radenovic then proved that Stoudamire wasn't the only Wildcat who can make three pointers as he made the score 31-25.

The Cats were doing well turning turnovers into points as they had 13 points stemming from turnovers at the 5:00 mark. Stoudamire then asked J.J. Redick who? Stoudamire proved that he is the best shooter in the nation by hitting four three pointers in a row. In the process he tied Arizona's record of three's in the first half with six. His fifth came from right around the Arizona logo on the court and the sixth from probably right around 30-foot range. The crowd was quiet, but only because they couldn't believe what they were witnessing.

The score at the half was 45-33 in Arizona's favor. The Beavers weren't playing bad basketball they just couldn't contain Stoudamire. Perhaps no one in college basketball can. The Wildcats handed OSU there only home loss of the season and now they were on the way to beating them on their own court. Stoudamire was powering the Cats with 20 points in the first half. He was six for eight from three-point land. It didn't hurt either that the Beavers were yet to make a free throw.

Arizona only got better in the second half. Adams got things kicked off sinking a jump shot. A Radenovic jumper made the score 50-38. Adams then attempted to tip in a missed shot by Kirk Walters but missed. However, he somehow was able to tip in his own miss and give the Cats a 14-point advantage. Frye scored after being fouled bumping the lead up to 17 points. Stoudamire then sank an easy three after OSU left him wide open. How any team can leave arguably the best shooter in the nation open is beyond me.

Adams was able to redeem himself from his previous missed dunk after snagging a steal and hitting a classic "Hot Sauce" dunk. Stoudamire then hit a jumper that he probably meant to be a three, but because his foot was in front of the lines in only added two points. However, Stoudamire would not be denied. He hit the milestone three pointer right around the 10:00 minute mark, making him the man who has hit more three's in a game than any other Wildcat in history. He was greeted with open arms from his excited teammates and a standing ovation from fans.

A short time later Coach Olson knew the Cats were out of harm's way with the game being out of reach. Olson decided to bring the bench in, but this time they were led by senior Matt Brase. A tip in by Brase got the crowd going again. Brase was then sent to the line after an intentional foul but he couldn't connect as he missed both shots. The crowd didn't seem to mind though as they watched Brase, Frye, and Stoudamire all playing at home for the final time. Jesus Verdejo also added success from the bench by contributing seven points. Arizona closed the victory with a score of 91-70. After the game a ceremony was held for their senior players who definitely deserved it. Stoudamire pinned up 31 of Arizona's 91 points. Frye contributed with 15 points and 11 rebounds. Adams played a lot like the Adams of last season with 13 points and was affective on the glass as well. However, the main part of the Wildcats' successes may have come from points scored off turnovers. OSU only scored six points from turnovers and the Cats brought in 26 points coming from turnovers. With each game Arizona looks better and better as they continue to dominate the Pac-10. Now they will prepare for Washington State and the Pac-10 tournament.


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