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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    BYU’s Fredette scores record in win over Arizona

    Michael Ignatov / Arizona Daily Wildcat

University of Arizona meets Brigham Young University in an NCAA mens basketball game at McKale Center, Tucson, Ariz., Dec. 28 2009. BYU went on to win 99-69, bolstered by Jimmer Fredettes 49 points, a McKale Center and BYU record.
    Michael Ignatov
    Michael Ignatov / Arizona Daily Wildcat University of Arizona meets Brigham Young University in an NCAA men’s basketball game at McKale Center, Tucson, Ariz., Dec. 28 2009. BYU went on to win 99-69, bolstered by Jimmer Fredette’s 49 points, a McKale Center and BYU record.

    The Arizona men’s basketball team would like to forget about its 99-69 loss to Brigham Young University Monday night in McKale Center.

    Unfortunately, the record books won’t be so kind.

    BYU point guard Jimmer Fredette scored a McKale Center and BYU team record 49 points to subdue an Arizona team (6-6) that only showed how far it has to go.

    “”His performance tonight was incredible,”” Arizona head coach Sean Miller said of Fredette. “”He and his performance alone really dictated the final score. They outclassed us tonight. That’s how it feels.””

    In Arizona’s worst home loss since former head coach Lute Olson started coaching in the 1983-84 season, Fredette had his way with UA. He shot 9-for-13 beyond the arc in breaking a BYU scoring record held by Bob Skousen, who had 47 points on Dec. 1, 1961, against UCLA.

    “”Sometimes you have a night like that where everything is going in,”” Fredette said, “”and that happened to be tonight.””

    The few UA highlights there occurred in a brief Wildcat rally to begin the second half, but even those few minutes Miller said were “”fool’s gold”” as BYU failed to take advantage of too many offensive rebounds given up by the Wildcats.

    Leading to Arizona’s early second-half success, neither the McKale crowd nor the Wildcats appeared defeated when they entered halftime down 51-36, a reasonable score considering BYU shot 59 percent and had hit 10 3-point shots in the first half.

    UA freshman Solomon Hill began the period with a layup to cut his team’s deficit to 13, igniting an 8-0 UA run. Forward Derrick Williams, who again led the team with 17 points, soon scored on a dunk to reel in BYU 51-44, but that was about it for the evening’s Arizona positives.

    “”Because they’re not ranked gives no credibility to rankings,”” Miller said of BYU. “”We lost to a better team.””

    The Wildcats’ success ended as BYU slipped into a zone defense that swung the momentum and catapulted the Cougars (13-1) to their eighth win in a row.

    “”We watched numerous film on them,”” said Hill, who scored 13 points. “”(The game) was kind of the same thing, the same deal. It was basically like every shot that went off their hands was good.””

    After Arizona’s short comeback effort, BYU—similarly to its first-half performance—found its swagger once again and extended the lead to 79-52 as the game entered the final 10 minutes.

    In the end, the Wildcats got off to a slow start and couldn’t execute for even close to 40 minutes of play.

    Horne stripped Fredette of the ball twice in the first few minutes of the game, but BYU’s leader soon found a rhythm and led his team on a 13-0 run.

    He hit two jumpers to help the Cougars lead 20-5 almost 5 minutes into the game. BYU started 8-for-10 from beyond the arc, paced by Fredette and his 24 first-half points.

    “”We gotta’ run back. That’s why we got down,”” Hill said. “”We had about two guys back and they probably had four guys back, and they swung it around and had open shots. (Miller) just told us (at halftime) we have to get back, and we have to get rebounds.””

    The lead hit 20 and Miller called a timeout, showing an odd calmness, as if he knew his team was in for a long night.

    As a team, the Cougars shot 74 percent overall through the first 10 minutes of the game, thanks to ball movement that translated to 22 total assists. Arizona finished with just 11 assists of its own.

    With two minutes left in the first half, senior point guard Nic Wise brought the team within 16 on a drive to the hoop that resulted in a bank shot and a made foul shot. With the score at 48-32, Wise had scored the last eight Wildcat points but his stat line at the end of the night read just that—eight points and without a single assist.

    “”My biggest worry is that you can really lose confidence when you get beat like that,”” Miller said. “”There’s no easy answers right now here at Arizona.””

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