Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
Wildcats Too Much For Lobos
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: December 07, 2010
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Dec. 7, 2010

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ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico - University of Arizona Wildcat women's basketball moved to 6-2 on the season with an 84-60 win over the University of New Mexico Lobos, Tuesday night at The Pit. The Lobos fell to 5-4 on the season.

"I really proud of our effort tonight," head coach Niya Butts said. "Senior Soana Lucet really jump started it for us and she gave us some quality minutes before getting into foul trouble. The important thing was we kept the pace going. Freshman Erica Barnes really gave us a lift with her double-double and senior Amanda Pierson played some great minutes off the bench. So did junior Reiko Thomas and junior Tasha Dickey. They all came in to give us some quality minutes."

Junior Shanita Arnold, freshman Erica Barnes, junior Brooke Jackson, senior Soana Lucet and sophomore Davellyn Whyte got the start for the Wildcats against New Mexico. Senior Amanda Pierson got the most minutes off the bench with 19. Arizona was without senior forward Ify Ibekwe on Tuesday while she is recovering from illness. In her place, Barnes made her first career start.

Whyte was Arizona's leading scorer with 24 points, including five three pointers. She was one of four Wildcats to score in double digits: Lucet (18), Jackson (17) and Barnes (10). Barnes turned in her third double-double of the season with her 12 rebounds, in addition to her 10 points. Pierson and Barnes did a great job filling in at the post. They accounted for 11 points and 19 rebounds.

Junior Reiko Thomas made her 2010-11 debut Tuesday night. She scored four points in the first half of play with a good jumper and two made free throws. She ended the game with six points, two assists, one steal and one rebound in 12 minutes of action.

The Wildcats opened up the contest with five quick points from Lucet and never looked back. It took New Mexico nearly two minutes to make their first basket of the contest. The 25-4 Wildcat run through the first nine minutes of play included three three-point baskets from Jackson. Arizona closed the first half with a 9-4 run, including a perfect 4-for-4 from the charity strip by Whyte, leading the Lobos, 38-24.

Lucet dumped in two good jumpers and a free throw to open the second half for the Wildcats. Jackson added two more three pointers to her total in the second half of play. Whyte was also hot from behind the arc, hitting five three-point baskets in the final nine minutes of play.

For the Lobos, Amanda Best was their leading scorer with 20 points. She also led at the glass with nine rebounds, including six defensively.

The Wildcats will take a break from games with the start of finals and return to the court Sun., Dec. 19 to face the New Mexico State Aggies. Tip-off is set for 2 p.m. at McKale Center.

Niya Butts postgame at New Mexico.

WB Welcome Coach Barnes