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Wildcats Open Season with 80-69 Win over San Diego
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 11/17/2004
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Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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By BOB BAUM AP Sports Writer

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) _ Mustafa Shakur scored 23 points and Ivan Radenovic 20 _ both career highs _ in 10th-ranked Arizona's often-sloppy 80-69 victory over San Diego Tuesday night in the first round of the Preseason NIT.

Salim Stoudamire also scored 20 for the Wildcats, who won their 13th straight Preseason NIT game and are 13-1 overall in the event. Arizona won the tournament in its last three appearances _ 1990, 1995, 1999.

The Wildcats will host Wright State in the second round Thursday night. The winner goes to the semifinals in New York next week.

Brice Voynang matched his career best with 28 points and had 11 rebounds for the Toreros. Brandon Gay added 17 points.

Shakur, the team's sophomore playmaker who averaged just six shots a game last season, was 7-for-12 in Arizona's season opener.

Radenovic, in his second season with the Wildcats from Serbia and Montenegro, was 8-for-17 and grabbed 10 rebounds.

The Wildcats led 41-23 at halftime.

San Diego, coming off a 4-26 season and 1-13 in the West Coast Conference, trailed only 14-10 after Voungang's 10-footer with 11:42 to play in the half. But Shakur banked in a 3-pointer to start at 16-0 Arizona run that made it 30-12 on Radenovic's fastbreak layup with 5:15 left in the half.

Shakur scored eight, Stoudamire five and Radenovic three during the surge.

From that point on, the outmanned Toreros outscored Arizona 57-50.

The Wildcats had 10 turnovers in the first half and San Diego 12. Shakur scored 12, and Stoudamire and Radenovic 10 apiece in the first 10 minutes.

Hassan Adams, who led Arizona in scoring last season at 17.3 points per game, was 0-for-3 shooting and committed three turnovers in a scoreless first half.

Brett Melton's 3-pointer started a 9-0 run that cut Arizona's lead to 59-47 on Avi Fogel's driving layup with 9:25 left.

The teams traded baskets, then Radenovic scored inside on a pass from Channing Frye, then and Stoudamire sank an 18-footer and a 14-foot floater from the baseline and Arizona was up 67-49 to boost Arizona's lead to 65-49 with five minutes to go.

The final margin was the closest San Diego got in the second half.

Arizona shot just 39 percent _ 35 percent in the second half, when San Diego outscored the Wildcats 46-39.

Frye was just 3-for-12 shooting but had 10 rebounds and seven assists. Shakur also had seven assists.

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