Strong Second Half Defeats WSU

Arizona entered the Pac-10 opener riding a five game win streak, and facing the Washington State Cougars (7-2) who love to slow things down. The first half was reminiscent of last year's games in which the Cats struggled, but a late first half push and strong second half led the UA to a 70-52 win.

Kirk Walters did not start the game against the Cougars as Marcus Williams got the nod and Ivan Radenovic moved to the five spot. The loss of a start seemed to light a fire under the big man who had an impressive line with nine points and five rebounds.

Washington State tried, and succeeded in slowing down the game early, as neither team reached double digits until 14:51 left in the first half.

Arizona played right into the slow down type offense of Washington State as they led only 15-13 with just over 10:00 left in the half but not until the Cats got a spark. Their pace sped up quite a bit and the UA took a nine point lead at the half with the score 35-26.

Arizona's first half was quite strong thanks to the late push. They finished with 17 first half rebounds, compared to Washington State's 10, and shot 42% from the field. Hassan Adams led the way for the UA in the first half scoring 13 points.

The second half was all Arizona as they took two big runs before moving on to win 70-52. The Cats sped up the offense and used great defense to come away with the win.

The UA shot 43.8% for the night, WSU only shot 36%. Adams led the way with 25 points, eight rebounds and four assists in the game.

Williams played well in his start scoring 15 points alongside four rebounds despite sitting out much of the second half with four fouls.

Williams and Adams combined for over 50% of the Cats' points in the game, and Arizona also outrebounded the Cougars 38-23.

Last year, WSU's Derrick Low put forth impressive performances, the first of which translated into a victory at McKale. Tonight he led the team with 11 points, but it was not enough to overcome Arizona's second half runs.

Arizona now looks ahead to its matchup with #7 Washington (11-0) who defeated ASU this evening.

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