Simon's three-point attack sparks late run by Arizona

By Arlie Rahn
Arizona Daily Wildcat
January 22, 1996

With 16:33 left in Saturday's game, the Arizona men's basketball team was seeing its season die before its eyes. The Wildcats had surrendered their 44-43 halftime lead and found themselves on the receiving end of a 9-2 Bruin run.

It was then that sophomore guard Miles Simon took over. Down 52-46, Simon nailed a 3-pointer to cut the lead to three.

But he wasn't done. Following a UCLA slam, Simon hit another 3-pointer from the left wing, pulling Arizona to within two.

"I just felt good out there today," said Simon, who finished with 28 points. "We didn't think they were a very good defensive team. We knew they always wanted to run and jump and get all jacked up. But we knew if we made them play defense and move their f eet for more than 10 seconds at a time, we'd get a good shot."

From that point on, Arizona regained its confidence and never fell down by more than three points en route to its 88-79 victory. The Wildcats finished the game shooting 13-20 (65 percent) from 3-point range and over 50 percent from the field.

"I saw Miles hitting, and I thought that I had better start shooting," said sophomore guard Michael Dickerson, who finished 4 for 4 from 3-point range. "We were really passing the ball well as a team and were patient on offense."

Simon's 28 points almost equaled his total of 30 points in his last four games, and was 6 for 9 from 3-point range. He also contributed five rebounds and seven assists.

"We have to be a team on offense - we can't just come down and make one pass and shoot," UA head coach Lute Olson said. "We have to make the defense move from side to side in order to get the good looks. Now if we come down and Miles has an open look, I w ant him to take the shot because he is an excellent 3-point shooter."

"Reggie and Ben kept telling me to take the shot whenever I had a good look," Simon said. "The key for me will be to play at this level against everybody, whether it's UCLA or Oregon State."