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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


No. 12 Arizona men’s basketball outlasts Stanford 71-57

Sydney Richardson

Arizona guard Gabe York (1) prepares to defend the Arizona basket at Stanford University on Thursday, Jan. 21.

STANFORD, CALIFORNIA—If Arizona men’s basketball head coach Sean Miller had to write a short list of his greatest adversaries, he’d likely put zone defense, road venues and foul trouble near the top.

The No. 12 Wildcats overcame all three of those in their 71-57 win over Stanford at Maples Pavilion on Thursday night.

Gabe York dropped 19 points including four 3-pointers while Ryan Anderson added another 18 points as Arizona evaded a deliberately slow Stanford squad.

“I thought our defense was the constant from start to finish,” Miller said. “It might have been our best overall defensive performance.”

The victory gives Arizona its second Pac-12 Conference road win of the year and moves the UA to 16-3 overall and 4-2 in conference play.

York’s shooting served as the catalyst for the Wildcats offensively, providing a pair of timely shots in the second half.

“Gabe York was tremendous,” Miller said. “He’s done it a number of times, especially in our road games. I thought him stepping up mid second half was one of the keys to our victory tonight.”

With Stanford down just 46-40 with under 11 minutes to go, York made a layup followed by a 3-pointer to put Arizona back up to double digits, 51-40.

The lead would never shrink to less than 10 points the rest of the night.

Arizona collectively shot 8-18 from 3-point range, carving up Stanford’s zone defense with an effective inside-out attack.

Mark Tollefsen hit two of those 3s and finished with 10 points. Kaleb Tarczewski also reached double digits with 11 points to go with seven rebounds, despite playing through foul trouble late in the second half.

Arizona’s defense, which has struggled to shut down opposing shooters all season, held Stanford’s Dorian Pickens to 3-of-10 shooting including just 1-of-7 from outside.

Pickens, a Phoenix native, didn’t help himself by missing more than a couple open looks.

The Cardinal’s Rosco Allen—who entered the night as Stanford’s leading scorer—had an even worse night, going 1-for-12 and scoring four points. He too made just one of seven 3-point attempts.

“Coach Miller put me on him,” Anderson said. “He just called on me to be aggressive, to be really focused on the details of our game plan against him, and trust my teammates that they were going to have my back.”

Instead, it was freshman Marcus Sheffield who led Stanford with 17 points on the night.

The Cardinal was collectively held to 31 percent shooting.

Nonetheless, Stanford remained competitive and even took a quick 40-39 lead early in the second half before Arizona responded with a defining 12-0 run capped by York’s shots.

“They are a very hard playing group,” Miller said. “They play together well on both ends. We knew before we came here that their zone defense is a big part of their success and I thought they battled our guys, especially in the first half.”

The Wildcats opened the game up strong, jumping out to a 12-4 lead at the first television break. A 3-pointer by Tollefsen expanded the advantage to 15-6 with 12:40 to go in the half.

Arizona held control through the midway point of the first half, when a York three put the UA up 20-13 with 9:29 remaining.

That’s when the scoring drought started.

The Wildcats would go scoreless for the next four and a half minutes. By then, Stanford had closed the lead to one possession.

With 40 seconds to go in the half, Pickens tied the score at 29 all before Kadeem Allen put Arizona on top by a pair.

At halftime, the Wildcats led Stanford 31-30.

Arizona now has just a few days off before it travels to Berkeley on Saturday to face California for a 6 p.m. tip-off.

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