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Cat Tracks: UA matches 1987-88 start with win over Oral Roberts

Sure, you could read the box score and know who won, but we all know that won’t tell you everything that happened in a football game. So, we give you ‘Cat Tracks’, providing you with the analysis, quotes and notes from Arizona’s December 18 win over Oral Roberts. Final score: Arizona 89, Oral Roberts 64 .

The Good:

After beating No. 5 Florida Saturday night — their first win over a top 5 team since 2008 — No. 4 Arizona Wildcats could have easily taken the Oral Roberts Eagles for granted Tuesday night. They didn’t.

The Wildcats raced out to an 18-8 start six and a half minutes in and never looked back.

UA’s backcourt once again had a stellar night, as Mark Lyons and Nick Johnson combined for 29 points, 10 assists and four steals.

Senior Solomon Hill had arguably his most well-rounded game of the season, pitching in with 12 points, six rebounds, six steals and five assists.

Freshman Grant Jarrett came in averaging 3.0 points per game over his last three contests, but scored a career-high 15 points Tuesday night. Fellow freshman Brandon Ashley scored 14 points, his highest total in the month of December.

The Bad:

On a night the Wildcats shot 57.6 percent in a blowout of an inferior opponent, there was little that went wrong for Sean Miller’s squad.

If there was a flaw it UA’s defense against Oral Roberts’ backcourt. Warren Niles and Shawn Glover combined for 40 points on 14-of-27 shooting.


• The Wildcats are off to their best start since Lute Olsen led the program to a 35-3 season and a Final Four appearance in 1987-88.

• While UA’s 9-0 start is impressive, seven of their non-conference games have been played at the McKale Center.

• Mark Lyons has scored at least 14 points in five of his last six games.

• UA went just 7-of-20 from three-point range in its win over Florida Saturday night. Against the Golden Eagles, the Wildcats shot 8-of-16.

Coming Up Next:

Arizona will finish the non-conference portion of their schedule at East Tennessee State on December 22 at 8:30 p.m. MST.