Mathurin and Kriisa help Arizona MBB get back on track with a 20 point win over USC


Jackie Cabrera

The Arizona men’s basketball team celebrates a 3-point shot against Oregon State University on Feb. 17 in McKale Center. The Wildcats went on to win the game 83-69.

Ryan Wohl

For the first time since 2018, the Arizona men’s basketball team are the regular-season Pac-12 champions. The Wildcats have now also clinched the No. 1 seed for the upcoming Pac-12 basketball tournament in Las Vegas next week.

The conference of champions now runs through Tucson once again.

Head coach Tommy Lloyd’s team has completed the season sweep of the University of Southern California basketball team after beating them tonight 91-71. Arizona went 3-1 on the season against both Los Angeles, California schools (UCLA AND USC).

This game was close throughout the first five minutes but then started to get ugly. When Arizona starts to get out and run on the fast break and have their 3-point shots fall, they are a very hard team to beat.


The Wildcats made seven 3-pointers throughout the first 20 minutes of the game and finished the contest 48% (12-25) from there. They were also 56% from the field (35-63) in the game.

Arizona struggled to shoot the ball in Boulder, Colo. on Saturday fishing the contest 28% (5/18) from deep and 39%  (20-51) from the field.

Tonight, they brought energy from the start of the game and showed everyone throughout the country how consistent of a team they have been the entire season. After each loss this season, the Wildcats have bounced back strong in the next game and won each one by at least 11 points.

Bennedict Mathurin and Kerr Kriisa combined for 37 points and seven 3-pointers throughout the game.

After turning the ball over 32 times in the last two games, Arizona ended tonight’s contest with only seven.

Over the past few weeks, Justin Kier and Oumar Ballo have continued to play a huge part in this team and were very efficient against USC. Kier had 12 points and six rebounds on 5-8 shooting from the field, while Ballo scored 11 points along with five rebounds on 5-7 shooting.

With two games to play in the regular season, the Wildcats are now 26-3 overall for the year and 16-2 in Pac-12 play. After a three-game road trip, Arizona returns to Tucson to play Stanford University on Thursday and the University of California Berkeley on Saturday to finish the season.

Follow Ryan Wohl on Twitter