Playing without their third-leading scorer, sophomore Brandon Ashley, the Arizona Wildcats struggled throughout their contest with the Oregon Ducks Thursday night.
But one player, in particular, just wouldn’t let the second-ranked team in the nation lose.
Starting only his third collegiate game, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson didn’t just fill in admirably for Ashley, who suffered a season-ending foot injury last Saturday at Cal, he more or less willed Arizona to victory.
The former McDonald’s All-American scored 14 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and stole three passes in a career-high 34 minutes of action, as the Wildcats survived for a 67-65 victory.
Hollis-Jefferson was also the only Arizona starter to shoot higher than 50 percent from the field, and during the team’s 15-9 run to end the game he had an offensive put-back, two rebounds and a steal.
Additionally, the 6-foot-7 freshman had a big night at the defensive end, limiting Oregon’s Mike Moser to a woeful 2-of-9 performance from the field for four points.