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Men's Hoops Analysis: Balance key for UA, starters come up big


By Amanda Branam
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Friday, February 11, 2005
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In last night's 88-76 win over USC, everyone in the Arizona men's basketball team starting five decided to get involved.

Aside from sophomore forward Ivan Radenovic, who scored nine points and added 12 rebounds, every starter scored in double figures.

UA senior guard Salim Stoudamire led the way with another outstanding shooting night, going 5-of-7 from beyond the arc and scoring 26 points overall.

"We had pretty good balance inside, and obviously Salim outside," said associate head Jim Rosborough. "It was well done."

The Trojans (9-14 overall, 2-10 Pacific 10 Conference) were simply outmatched by the Wildcats (20-4, 10-2) balance of an outside presence by Stoudamire, and a strong inside presence with Radenovic, senior center Channing Frye, and sophomore center Kirk Walters.

The Wildcats scored 48 of their 88 points in the paint. Frye finished with 14 points, seven rebounds, four assists and four blocks. Walters came off the bench to add six points.

"That's what we need - it's a symbol of coach O's offense," Frye said. "You look around the board and people are contributing in all different areas from blocks, steals, assists. That's what we need, and that's what we're going to need from everyone. That's how we are going to be successful the rest of the season."

Sophomore point guard Mustafa Shakur had a rough first half, playing only nine minutes and only getting two points and an assist. He finished strong playing 24 minutes overall, scoring 10 points and adding five rebounds and five assists.

Junior forward Hassan Adams scored eight of his 10 points in the second half, and grabbed two rebounds

"We couldn't guard them. We could score a little bit, but we couldn't get any stops," said USC interim head coach Jim Saia said. "The beginning of the second half, we let the game get away from us and they took it to us."

In addition to the starting five, the bench contributed 19 points overall. Freshman guard Jawann McClellan led all bench players with eight points and added three rebounds.

Freshman guard Jesus Verdejo chipped in five points.

The Wildcats were also able to spread distribute minutes well, especially since UA head coach Lute Olson went to his bench early in the game.

Eight of the 13 players who played put in at least 18 minutes of work.

The starting five put in 22 minutes or more, with Stoudmire playing the most at 29 minutes. Off the bench, Walters played 18 minutes, McClellan 19, and junior guard Chris Rodgers led the bench with 20 minutes.



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