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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


At the half: Arizona leads CSU-Bakersfield 44-26

Alex McIntyre
Arizona forward Lauri Markkanen (10) dunks ahead of CSU Bakersfield forward Matt Smith (0) against CSU Bakersfield in McKale Center on Tuesday, Nov. 15. The Wildcats are up 44-26 at halftime.

After another sloppy start in the game’s opening minutes, Arizona leads Cal-State Bakersfield 44-26 at the end of the first half. Bakersfield opened the game on a 7-2 run, but Arizona had complete control of the game by halftime. 

Freshman Lauri Markkanen led the way for the Wildcats with 12 points and 4 rebounds.

With Kadeem Allen nursing a knee injury suffered in the Wildcats’ season opening win over then-No. 12 Michigan State, Kobi Simmons received his first collegiate start. This allowed freshman Rawle Alkins to get his first minutes of the season at a guard position, and it appeared to make all the difference. 

Alkins connected on his first three attempts from beyond the arc, and went 3-for-4 overall in the half. Along with Markkanen, he was Arizona’s leading scorer with 12 points.

Markkanen opened the scoring for the Wildcats breaking the Bakersfield press and going coast-to-coast for a rousing McKale Center slam dunk. He displayed his versatility playing three positions in the first half, including a few minutes at shooting guard.

Arizona has only seven available scholarship players in tonight’s game, and head coach Sean Miller has been mixing up his lineup. Markkanen was in the game as Arizona’s shooting guard at one point, and junior Keanu Pinder was playing small forward. 

Sophomore Paulo Cruz became the first walk-on player to enter a game this season and played just one minute. 

Follow Christopher Deak on Twitter.

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