Jan. 8, 2013
Date: Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013
Time: 6 p.m. PST
Location: Matthew Knight Arena (12,369), Eugene, Ore.
Radio: IMG College/Wildcat Radio Network (Brian Jeffries/Matt Muehlebach)
TV: ESPN2 (Dave Pasch/Bill Walton)
GAME DATA: Fourth-ranked Arizona (14-0, 2-0 Pac-12) hits the road for the first time in Pac-12 action, heading to Eugene, Ore., Thursday to face Oregon (12-2, 1-0 Pac-12) in Matthew Knight Arena ... It is Arizona's first appearance in the facility, which opened in 2011, and the Cats are 4-1 in its last five trips to Eugene ... In two true road games this season, Arizona is averaging 75.5 points per game and limiting the hosts to 55.5 points and a .365 (42-of-115) field goal percentage.
THE RANKINGS: UA is ranked fourth in the Associated Press poll and third in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' poll. The Cats' No. 3 ranking is the highest for the program under Joe Pasternack ... Miller is 4-1 vs. Oregon as a head coach.
LAST TIME OUT: In a game that Arizona led throughout, the Cats had to withstand a Utah rally in what was a 60-57 win Saturday. The Cats connected on just 36.2 percent of its field goal attempts and saw a 10-point lead dwindle to three on the final possession before a Utah game-tying shot was off the mark with four seconds to go. Arizona outrebounded Utah by 11 and held an 11-2 advantage in points off turnovers. Solomon Hill and Mark Lyons combined for 20 points in the second half.
SCOUTING OREGON: The Ducks enter tonight's game with a 12-2 record (1-0 Pac-12) following Sunday's 79-66 win at Oregon State. On the season, Oregon averages 77.5 points per game, shoots 46.7 percent from the floor (388-of-831), 31.5 percent (78-of-248) from three-point range and 73.6 percent (231-of-314) from the line. Opponents average 60.8 points, are outrebounded by 10.6 per game and shoot 38.4 percent from the floor (304-of-792). Individually, five Oregon players average in double figures, led by Damyean Dotson's 11.8 ppg figure. Arsalan Kazemi leads the Ducks in rebounding at 9.8 rebounds per game.
THE SERIES: Tonight's game is the 70th meeting of the two schools with Arizona holding a 45-24 advantage in the series, which dates back to Jan. 12, 1979. The Cats have won six of the last 10 games in the series, but Oregon captured the last, 59-57, in Tucson on Jan. 14, 2012. All-time, Arizona is 26-8 in series games played in Tucson, 19-14 in Eugene, and 0-2 in neutral-site games. For more series information, please see page 47 in the UA media guide.
LAST MEETING: Oregon 59, Arizona 57, Jan. 14, 2012: Oregon built a 17-point, second-half lead, only to see Arizona roar back and take a two-point lead of its own with 2:59 to go before E.J. Singler and Garrett Sim sank back-to-back buckets to give the Ducks the lead for good. Arizona had opportunities on the closing possession, but a game-winning trey and a game-tying jumper were off the mark. Solomon Hill led all scorers with 16 points, but Oregon's balance put four players in double figures.
CONSISTENTLY GOOD: Kevin Parrom has been one of Arizona's most productive players, averaging 12.8 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game. In that span, the 6-foot-6 swingman has connected on 58.8 percent of his field goal attempts (20-of-34), including 46.7 percent (7-of-15) from three-point range. Through 14 games, Parrom is averaging 9.3 points and 5.4 rebounds per game.
A PLAYMAKER IN MORE WAYS THAN ONE: It was another week of strong finishes for Mark Lyons, this time from the free throw line. Thursday vs. Colorado, Lyons equaled a career high with 10-of-10 free throws made, including a pair with nine seconds remaining in regulation that tied the contest and was 3-of-3 in overtime. Saturday vs. Utah he was 5-of-6 from the line, including two free throws with seven seconds to go that provided the final margin. Fifteen of Lyons's 36 points this week came from the line, and he leads Arizona with a .883 (53-of-60) free throw percentage. He finished Saturday's game with 12 points, marking the 75th game in double figures in his college career.
WORKING TOGETHER: Arizona's three freshmen inside players - Brandon Ashley (13), Kaleb Tarczewski (12) and Grant Jerrett (9) - have combined for 34 blocked shots and the trio ranks first, second and third on the squad in that category.
WINNING WHEN WE'RE NOT AT OUR BEST: Arizona connected on just 36.2 percent of its field goal attempts (21-of-58) Saturday against Utah, winning its third game this season (at Clemson/SDSU/Utah) when it misses more than 60 percent of its field goal attempts, and is 5-0 when shooting worse than the opposition. On the season, Arizona shoots 46.3 percent (355-of-766) from the floor and limits the opposition to 39.8 percent (304-of-764).
FAST START: Freshman forward Brandon Ashley put his best foot forward in a hurry vs. the Utes, scoring Arizona's first seven points of the game and posting nine of his 11 points in the first nine minutes. It was the sixth game in double figures for the 6-foot-8 native of San Francisco, Calif., and his first in four game. To date, he's averaging 8.3 points and 6.1 rebounds per game to go with a .569 field goal percentage.
IT'S KEEPS YOU RUNNING: Arizona has displayed a knack for timely runs so far this season. Thursday against Colorado, the Wildcats used a 27-8 run to close the second half and through overtime to turn a 10-point deficit into a nine-point win. Here is a look at UA's notable runs to date:
26-3 run over 8:41 (2nd) at Texas Tech, Dec. 1
27-8 run over 6:53 (2nd+ot) vs. Colorado, Jan. 3
21-4 run over 9:07 (2nd) vs. Long Beach State, Nov. 19
23-6 run over 7:55 (1st) vs. Long Beach State, Nov. 19
22-7 run over 8:56 (2nd) at Clemson, Dec. 8
13-0 run over 4:26 (2nd) vs. UTEP, Nov. 15
14-2 run over 4:10 (2nd) vs. Northern Arizona, Nov. 28
22-10 run over 9:27 (1st) vs. Charleston Southern, Nov. 11
11-0 run over 3:13 (2nd) vs. Oral Roberts, Dec. 18
14-4 run over 5:48 (2nd) vs. Southern Miss, Dec. 4
RECRUITING CLASS: The Arizona coaching staff signed two student-athletes to National-Letters-of-Intent as part of the November early signing period. Rondae Jefferson (F, 6-7, 215) from Chester, Pa., who preps at Chester H.S.; and Elliott Pitts (G, 6-5, 180) from Dublin, Calif., who preps at De La Salle H.S.; make up a class that is ranked No. 18 nationally by espn.com.
UP NEXT: Following tonight's game, the Wildcats are back in action on Saturday, Jan. 12, when the squad meets Oregon State. Tip-off is scheduled for 5 p.m. PST and can be seen on ESPNU.