Arizona basketball: Perfect 3-point night for Parrom

He's 5-for-5 in shift to shooting guard, but defense must improve
2012-11-20T00:00:00Z 2014-07-02T12:12:58Z Arizona basketball: Perfect 3-point night for ParromPatrick Finley Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
November 20, 2012 12:00 am  • 

During practices, the Arizona Wildcats break up into two teams of four - the red squad and the blue squad - on opposite ends on the floor.

Each side shoots for five minutes and counts one point for every basket made.

Over the years, UA coach Sean Miller said, it's been difficult for either side to get to 200.

This season, though, each side has reached 200 every time.

The takeaway: the Wildcats can shoot.

Following a perfect night Monday in a 94-72 win against Long Beach State, wing Kevin Parrom sounded confident that he was the best of the bunch.

"I was feeling it," the senior said after making all five three-point attempts. "I'm the shooter on the team, so I do what I needed to do."

Nearby, forward Solomon Hill shook his head competitively.

"I think, on any given night, it can be somebody different," Hill said. "Tonight was Kev's night. I hope you guys look for him to go 5-for-5 next game, too.

"But if he can continue shooting like that, it adds another dimension to our team."

That dimension is compounded when, as he did at times Monday, Parrom switches positions.

Both Monday and last week against UTEP, Parrom played the shooting guard, allowing Miller to keep Hill in the game at small forward.

"I love playing the 'two,'" said Parrom, who finished with 15 points in 20 minutes. "We're bigger, more physical."

When the UA enlists smaller guards, it sends at least one back on defense early to protect against a fast break every time the Wildcats shoot the ball.

With Parrom in the game, all five players went for offensive rebounds.

"It just adds to our defensive mentality," Hill said. "How we can come in and keep pressure on the ball." But they didn't do that well enough, Miller said after the 49ers made 14 three-pointers.

"Kevin has to improve on defense," Miller said. "You can't make five threes and give up six. It's just not gonna work. You're not gonna play.

"He's not the only person, but guarding the two is a real challenge, and it's different sometimes than guarding a small forward. He has to continue to grow in that area, so that we don't give up threes or ball pressure or get beat off the dribble.

"I think he knows that."

Miller said Parrom's presence at shooting guard will, in the future, be decided by his defense, rather than how a big lineup fits against the opposition.

"It'll depend on Kevin," he said, "his continued development and improvement."

LBSU coach Dan Monson said the UA's "size and length bothered us both in the frontcourt and the backcourt" Monday.

"They shoot the ball," he said. "And they have great length, good size and great guards."

Miller said Parrom was "really dynamic, with his ability to shoot," while playing shooting guard against the 49ers.

"If he's not our team's best shooter," Miller said, "he's certainly right there."

Over three games, Parrom has improved from six points in the opener, to seven points Thursday, to 15 on Monday. His seven three-pointers lead the team, and his 63.6 percent clip from beyond the arc trails only Grant Jerrett.

"I've grown," Parrom said. "I think everybody's grown. Everybody has to grow to get to where we want to get to."

Where Parrom plays doesn't much matter to him.

"When my number's called," he said, "I go out there and play.

"Two or three - whatever."

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Pac-12 basketball standings

  Conference Overall
Arizona 16 2 0 0.889 34 4 0 0.895
Utah 13 5 0 0.722 26 9 0 0.743
Oregon 12 5 0 0.706 25 10 0 0.714
UCLA 11 7 0 0.611 22 14 0 0.611
Arizona State 9 9 0 0.500 19 16 0 0.543
Stanford 9 9 0 0.500 24 13 0 0.649
Oregon State 8 10 0 0.444 16 14 0 0.533
Colorado 7 10 0 0.412 16 16 0 0.500
Washington State 7 11 0 0.389 13 18 0 0.419
California 6 11 0 0.353 17 15 0 0.531
Washington 5 13 0 0.278 16 15 0 0.516
USC 3 14 0 0.176 12 19 0 0.387
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