The Arizona Wildcats (15-7, 5-6 Pac-12) used a big fourth quarter to outlast the Washington Huskies (8-16, 1-11 Pac-12) by a score of 69-59 on Thursday night. The nation’s second-leading scorer Aari McDonald finished with a game-high 24 points to go along with seven rebounds, four assists and three steals.
Sam Thomas scored 15 points, grabbing six rebounds as well as a pair of blocks and steals. Thomas made three 3-pointers, including a late one. Dominique McBryde added 10 points and four rebounds.
Arizona shot 54 percent from the field, the highest percentage the Cats have shot from the field all season. The Wildcats shot 8-17 from three and won the rebounding battle 33-27.
Defensively, Arizona held Washington to 37 percent shooting and forced 17 turnovers. There were 14 lead changes throughout the game and the contest was tied eight times.
The first half was riddled with turnovers as the two teams gave the ball away a combined 27 times. It was close heading into halftime as Arizona led the Huskies 28-25.
Arizona and Washington turned up the scoring in the third quarter with the Dawgs outscoring the Wildcats 19-18 in the period. Arizona was up 46-44 heading into the fourth quarter.
The Wildcats put the game away in the fourth quarter with outstanding defense as they forced the Huskies to shoot 23 percent in the final period. Arizona shot 6-9 from the field in the fourth to go along with nine made free throws and finished with 23 points, the most of any quarter tonight.