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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    From the B-Ball Blog

    Fendi Onobun wasn’t even supposed to make the trip to Vancouver with the team after suffering a badly bruised right knee. But not only did Onobun go, he played in the last two games and performed better than expected, averaging 3.5 points and 4.5 rebounds in 17.5 minutes of play.

    Onobun originally had trouble moving laterally, but the injury “”wasn’t as bad as expected,”” a source close to the team said. The game situations in Canada paled in comparison to the intense workouts Onobun and his teammates went through during the 10 days of practice preceding the trip, and the sophomore forward was capable of playing a substantial number of minutes.

    Chase Budinger sat out the last three games, but in his brief beginning, the freshman showed off his athleticism, knack for scoring and, more importantly, toughness, despite battling throat pains and the flu. Budinger even had trouble coughing and “”said about 5 to 10 words on the whole trip,”” according to the source, but the Carlsbad, Calif., native “”wanted to be out there and give it a shot.””

    The attendance at the five games never reached more than about several hundred people and had the feel of high school or Amateur Athletic Union games. The partisan crowd was at times as much as 75 percent Arizona fans.

    Unlike 2006 NCAA champion Florida’s trip to Niagara Falls last weekend, where the team water-skied and took a high-speed boat ride, the Wildcats were all business. Fitting in five games in just three days made little room for anything but sleep during nonbasketball hours.

    The group did get to enjoy some of the football team’s win over Brigham Young on Saturday night. Thanks to five televisions showing the game on TBS in the restaurant where the team ate, the basketball players were able to catch the end of the third quarter and all of the fourth quarter. When Nick Folk made the game-winning kick, the team erupted, much to the surprise of the rest of the restaurant patrons.

    In addition, plans to visit Whistler, the site of the 2010 Winter Olympics, were canceled due to time constraints.

    Sources said the biggest difference between this year’s team and last year’s is the improved chemistry. Although the team had a 6:15 wake-up call Monday morning to play a 9 a.m. game, the afternoon flight back to Tucson was boisterous and full of laughter.

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