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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Utah shows Arizona men’s basketball no Valentine’s Day love, sends losing skid to historic six games

Madeleine Viceconte
Center Chase Jeter (4) pushes past a Utah player during the game on Stuarday, Jan. 5 at McKale Center. Arizona beat Utah in overtime 84-81.

The most famous work done by painter Vincent van Gogh was arguably “Starry Night,” a depiction of the artist’s home of Saint-Rémy-de-Provence in France. The way Utah guard Parker Van Dyke shot the ball Thursday night, he could have shot the lights, or stars right out of the night sky.

Van Dyke shot a blistering 7-10 from 3 to finish with 23 points, and Arizona continued its downward spiral in an 83-76 loss at Utah. The loss is the sixth in a row for the ‘Cats, the longest streak since December of 1983, when Lute Olson was in his first season as the head coach.

The Wildcats had four players score in double figures, but got just 10 points combined from their leading scorers Brandon Randolph and Chase Jeter, including only 2 on 1-5 shooting for Randolph. The sophomore has now scored just 10 points combined in his last three games, in the midst of a 4-25 shooting slump.

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The ‘Cats held a 32-31 lead at halftime, but were unable to stop Van Dyke, who went 5-5 from 3-point range in the half. Ira Lee had nine points and six rebound in the first half, including a monster dunk that ignited an 11-3 Arizona run, giving the team their biggest lead of the game at 32-26. 

The Utes used an 18-2 run in the second half to go up 66-51, promoting head coach Sean Miller to put in seldom-used Jake DesJardins and walk-on Matt Weyand. UA got as close as 72-65 with 2:25 left, but the Utes went 17-22 from the free-throw line in the second half to effectively end things.

Dylan Smith led Arizona with 16 points, while Ryan Luther pitched in with 14 on 4-6 from 3. Alex Barcello had 12 and Lee finished with 11 and eight rebounds. The ‘Cats shot just 8-24 from 3, a sign of things recently. Since going 14-28 against ASU, Arizona has shot 18-65 over the last three games from 3. 

As is customary in the Pac-12, the Wildcats have to erase this game quickly, with two days to prepare for Colorado in Boulder. Tipoff is set for 6 p.m. on ESPNU.

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