Wildcats advance to Pac-12 Championship with win over ASU

Mar 10, 2023, 11:52 PM | Updated: Mar 11, 2023, 12:04 am

Pelle Larsson #3 of the Arizona Wildcats drives against Alonzo Gaffney #32 of the Arizona State Sun...

Pelle Larsson #3 of the Arizona Wildcats drives against Alonzo Gaffney #32 of the Arizona State Sun Devils in the first half of a semifinal game of the Pac-12 basketball tournament at T-Mobile Arena on March 10, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

(Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

The No. 8 Arizona Wildcats (27-6) are headed to their second-straight Pac-12 Championship game following a 78-59 win over the Arizona State Sun Devils (22-12) on Friday night in Las Vegas.

Arizona will take on the UCLA Bruins, who punched their ticket to the conference tournament with a win over Oregon, on Saturday.

It’s a rematch of last year’s Pac-12 title game after Arizona took down UCLA 84-76 in 2022.

The Sun Devils on the other hand head into the weekend wondering if they are in or out in terms of the NCAA Tournament.

Four Wildcats finished in double figures, with forward Azuolas Tubelis leading the way behind 17 points on 8-of-11 shooting to go along with nine rebounds and three assists.

Center Oumar Ballo chipped in 14 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and three blocks.

Arizona State’s Jamiya Neal and Frankie Collins led all Sun Devil scorers with 11 points apiece.

Arizona led for most of the evening, though, that’s not to say ASU didn’t make things interesting in the second half.

After trailing by double figures, the Sun Devils were able to cut the Wildcats’ lead down to as low as four around the seven-minute mark.

That would be as close as ASU would get, however, as Arizona quickly responded behind a pair of Ballo layups and a Larson three ball to push the lead back to 63-52 with 5:50 to play.

From there, the Wildcats would never look back, seeing their lead grow to as many as 20 points over the final five minutes of play.

Arizona Basketball

Azuolas Tubelis #10 and Kylan Boswell #4 of the Arizona Wildcats and Luther Muhammad #1 of the Ariz...

Stephen Gugliociello

Pac-12 plots points for Arizona, ASU men’s basketball schedule

The schedule for the 2023-24 Pac-12 men's basketball conference season was announced on Thursday, but no firm dates are set yet. 

9 days ago

ACC commissioner Jim Phillips...

Associated Press

ACC moves forward to add Stanford, Cal and SMU

The Atlantic Coast Conference has cleared the way for Stanford, California and SMU to join the league next year, per the AP.

22 days ago

ACC logo...

Associated Press

UNC pushes back on ACC possibly adding Pac-12’s Stanford, Cal

ACC presidents and chancellors are scheduled to meet Friday morning to again consider adding Stanford, Cal and SMU.

22 days ago

United States center Jaren Jackson Jr. and Jordan's Rondae Hollis-Jefferson...

Associated Press

FIBA World Cup: USA Basketball powers past Jordan team led by former Wildcat Hollis-Jefferson

Another game, another blowout for the U.S. at the Basketball World Cup. And now the competition figures to get considerably tougher.

24 days ago

Big 12...

Associated Press

Big 12 numbers: Evolving conference has more schools, students and miles to travel

The Big 12 Conference is bigger than ever before with 14 schools spread across eight states, and those numbers will increase next year.

28 days ago

West Virginia fan Terry Keenan...

Kevin Zimmerman

Big 12 and Pac-12 realignment leads to longer travel but new visits for fans

Fans of Big 12, and those of Pac-12 teams joining it after this season, see travel challenges but are excited to visit new venues and cities.

1 month ago

Wildcats advance to Pac-12 Championship with win over ASU