Arizona’s one-two punch of Deandre Ayton and Allonzo Trier did it again Saturday, and this time it was against the Wildcats’ toughest Pac-12 nemesis.
Arizona pulled out a 90-83 win over Oregon with Ayton collecting 24 points and seven rebounds, and Trier scoring 25 with six rebounds. Both players also went to the free-throw line 11 times, with Trier hitting all 11 shots and Ayton making 10.
Arizona shot 54.3 percent overall and made 34 of 37 free throws in game where 51 fouls were called. Oregon made 21 of 24 free throws, giving the Wildcats more than enough to win the game with 13 extra points at the line.
While the Wildcats allowed Oregon to shoot 47.4 percent, their defense helped them pull away down the stretch, with the Ducks going scoreless for over three minutes before Mikyle McIntosh scored inside to cut UA’s lead to 84-79 with 59.5 seconds left.
The Wildcats hung on from there, getting four free throws from Keanu Pinder and two from Rawle Alkins over the final minute.
Pinder finished with six points, two blocks and a steal -- but three turnovers - in 18 minutes after not playing at all against Oregon State on Thursday.
The win moved UA to 14-4 overall and 4-1 in the Pac-12, while Oregon dropped to 12-6 and 2-3. The Ducks had beaten UA in three of four previous matchups, but have now lost two straight to the Wildcats. They will play again on Feb. 24 at Eugene.
Down 75-71 with 5:40 left, Arizona received a 3-pointer from Rawle Alkins to cut it to one. Later, an alley-oop dunk from Ayton on a feed from Allonzo Trier, and a 3-pointer from Trier on UA’s next possession, gave the Wildcats an 81-77 lead heading into the final two minutes.
Keanu Pinder then stole the ball from Oregon’s Troy Brown, leading to a pair of free throws by Trier that gave UA an 83-77 lead with 1:39 left.
Arizona expanded a three-point halftime lead to 51-40 just three minutes into the second half after a dunk from Ayton but the Ducks took advantage of eight trips to the free throw line after Ayton committed a technical foul with 13:43, apparently for talking after he dunked.
The Ducks made 7 of 9 free throws overall in the first eight minutes of the second half, when UA committed eight fouls. Oregon tied the game at 55 on two free throws from Mikyle McIntosh with 12:30 to go.
The teams traded leads over the next four minutes, with Oregon’s Elijah Brown hitting a pair of open 3-pointers from the right corner to keep the Ducks close. Brown later hit all three free throws he took after Rawle Alkins fouled him behind the 3-point line to give Oregon its biggest lead of the second half, 75-51, with 5:40 left.
Leading by up to 13 points in the first half, Arizona missed nine of its final 10 field goals to carry only a 41-38 lead into halftime.
Arizona shot 50 percent from the field but allowed the Ducks to shoot 51.9 percent, and the Wildcats turned the ball over 11 times, leading to 14 Oregon points.
Arizona also missed nine of their final 10 field goals to finish out the half.
Ayton and Dusan Ristic had 10 points each to lead the Wildcats in first-half scoring, while New Mexico transfer Elijah Brown had 13 to lead Oregon despite committing a technical foul that resulted in two free throws by Allonzo Trier.
After Oregon took an early 7-2 lead, the Wildcats initially began to solve the Ducks’ zone defense with patient ball movement and 3-point shooting. UA went on a 13-0 run over a five-minute span to take a 21-9 lead after eight minute, at that point shooting 69.2 percent from the field and holding Oregon to 40-percent shooting.
But Oregon came back with a 7-0 run to pull within five points and managed to score inside often while pulling to within 32-31 entering the final four minutes, after layups from Victor Bailey and Mikyle McIntosh.