No. 1 Seed Arizona (27-5, 15-3) at Pacific Life Pac-10 Tournament Championship
Date: Saturday, March 12, 2005
Time: 3:10 p.m. PST
Location: Staples Center (19,282), Los Angeles, Calif.
Radio: Wildcat Radio Network (Brian Jeffries/Ryan Hansen)
TV: CBS (Dick Enberg/Bob Wenzel)
Game Data: No. 1 seed Arizona (27-5, 15-3 Pac-10) advanced to the championship game of the 2005 Pacific Life Pac-10 Tournament Saturday and will face No. 2 seed Washington (26-5, 14-4 Pac-10) ... Arizona’s 15 wins and four titles (1988-90, 2002) in this event are league bests ... Since the event was reborn in the Staples Center, UA is 6-2 in tournament action.
The Rankings: After winning its only game last week, Arizona rose to No. 8 in both the Associated Press Top 25 and to the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Polls. UA has been ranked in 302 consecutive AP polls released during the regular season only.
Last Time Out: Five Wildcats finished in double figures to lead a balanced offensive attack as Arizona claimed a 31-point win Friday over Oregon State. Channing Frye and Salim Stoudamire scored 17 points a piece to lead UA, as the squad shot 59.3 percent from the field (35-of-59) for the game. Arizona used a 12-0 run to open the second half and break open what was a tight game. The Wildcats shot 68.8 percent from the field (22-of-32) in the second half to post the largest winning margin in Pac-10 Tournament history.
Been Here Before: With the win Friday, Arizona advances to the Pac-10 Tournament championship game for the fifth time in the event’s eight year history. The Wildcats are 4-0 in Pac-10 title games, claiming victories in 1988, 1989, 1990 and 2002.
Improving over Yesterday: The Cats’ 90-59 win over Oregon State set a new tournament record for margin of victory. The 31-point win eclipsed the old record of 26, set by Arizona’s 93-67 win over Oregon State in the 1988 championship game, which was played in Tucson. Incidentally, Arizona has defeated its two Pac-10 Tournament opponents by a combined 56 points.
Inching Closer: Senior Salim Stoudamire knocked down three treys Friday to move even closer to the Pac-10 career three-point field goals lead. The guard from Portland, Ore., enters Saturday’s game just two treys shy of breaking the Pac-10 career record of 323, which is currently held by Arizona State’s Stevin Smith. Incidentally, Stoudamire’s three three-pointers Friday gave him 100 for the season, which makes him just the fourth Wildcat in history to break the century mark from behind the arc. He joins Steve Kerr (114, treys, 1987-88), Damon Stoudamire (112, 1994-95) and Jason Gardner (106, 2001-02) at the top of the UA single-season list.
Not a Donut but a Danish: Led by Channing Frye, Arizona’s offensive attach has been anything by missing in the middle. The 6-foot-11 senior from Phoenix, Ariz., connected on 7-of-8 field goal attempts en route to 17 points, seven rebounds and two steals. In the two tournament games, Frye is shooting 17-of-19 (.895) from the floor and has tallied 39 points. Additionally, Frye has been red hot of late, as he has connected on 75.9 percent of his field goal attempts (44-of-58) over his last five games. The effort has raised his team-leading field goal percentage to 54.3 percent (195-of-359).
Not to be Outdone: Freshman Jawann McClellan has been nothing short of impressive in his first postseason appearances. The freshman from Houston equaled a career high for the second night in a row with six field goals as he knocked down 6-of-7 shots, including 2-of-3 from three-point range, to finish with 15 points. For the tournament, McClellan is shooting 80.0 percent from the field (12-of-15) and is averaging 14.5 points and 4.5 rebounds in 21.5 minutes played. Entering the tournament, McClellan was 5.0 points and 2.7 rebounds in 14 minutes per game.
On Target: Arizona blistered the nets with 59.3 percent shooting (35-of-59) Friday in defeating Oregon State. Included in the effort was 68.8 percent shooting (22-of-32) in the second half, which was a UA Pac-10 Tournament record for field goal percentage in the second half. At one point of the second half Friday, Arizona made 10-of-11 field goal attempts. For the tournament, Arizona is shooting a combined 58.7 percent (71-of-121) from the field.