UA basketball: San Diego State 61, Arizona 57 final

2011-11-23T18:00:00Z 2014-01-24T16:00:07Z UA basketball: San Diego State 61, Arizona 57 finalBruce Pascoe, Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
November 23, 2011 6:00 pm  • 

The Arizona Wildcats' homecourt winning streak survived a loss to Division II Seattle Pacific last month because it was an exhibition.

But this one counted.

The Wildcats lost 61-57 to San Diego State tonight, snapping their regular-season homecourt winning streak at 22 games.

Arizona trailed 16-2 and 21-4 early and, despite pulling within two points at halftime, never fully caught up. They have not led a game at any point since beating St. John's on Nov. 17 in New York.

The loss dropped Arizona to 4-2 and possibly out of the Top 25 polls for the first time since the middle of last season. San Diego State improved to 6-1.

Arizona shot just 33 percent from the field while San Diego State hit 45 percent overall and made 8 of 12 three-pointers. The Aztecs were led by Chase Tapley, who had 17 points, while Solomon Hill had 14 for Arizona but made only 4 of 12 field goals and was 1 of 6 from three-point range.

Josiah Turner and Nick Johnson each had 10 points for the Wildcats while Jesse Perry had 11 rebounds.

Arizona trailed the Aztecs by two at halftime but never drew closer in the second half. Jesse Perry and Kevin Parrom both hit three-pointers that drew Arizona within three points but the Aztecs led by double digits midway through the half.

A memorable sequence by Johnson helped the Wildcats cut it to 57-51 with three minutes left. Johnson blocked a SDSU shot that turned into a score by Solomon Hill and later returned for a three-pointer.

Johnson was, however, turned the ball over with three minutes left when he was called for a ballhandling violation.

With 1:03 left, SDSU's Tapley hit a three-pointer to give the Aztecs a 60-51 and put the game out of reach for the Wildcats. Arizona cut the SDSU lead to 61-57 with four seconds left but couldn't get any closer.

In the first half, the Wildcats nearly erased an early 16-2 deficit while San Diego State held on to a 31-29 halftime lead.

The Wildcats made just two of their first nine field goals while SDSU was 7 for 9 and hit all three three-pointers it took while coasting to the early 14-point lead.

But by halftime, the stats had evened out somewhat. Arizona shot just 31 percent from the field but forced eight San Diego State turnovers and took seven more free throws than the Aztecs.

SDSU shot 57.1 percent from the field and was led by Tapley, who had 10 points.

Arizona had 10 points from Hill, while Turner had six, including two free throws with four seconds left that cut the Wildcats' deficit to two points.

Freshman forward Sidiki Johnson was not on the bench for UA. He was suspended Monday for what UA termed "violations of team policy." Coach Sean Miller said after the game he was not optimistic JOhnson would return to the team.

 

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