Arizona Basketball

Backcourt U? Arizona has the luxury of so many good perimeter players LLoyd said he ‘wants them to get comfortable’

There was no rhyme or reason – maybe just there was plenty of playing time to be had – for Tommy Lloyd mixing up the lineups and seeing what he has. The combinations varied so much it was difficult to keep track.

Oh, what depth does for a team, right? Even with three prominent big men out with injuries. Oumar Ballo, Motiejus Krivas and Pelle Larsson all sat out Friday night’s 110-70 win over Lewis & Clark State, a team that explored the southwest and found, well, a beatdown.

It came in the form of Arizona’s fast-paced game with, um, so much talent. Friday night it began and ended with Arizona’s backcourt of Caleb Love, Kylan Boswell, Keshad Johnson.

Arizona’s three-headed monster on the perimeter.

Not exactly Point Guard U, but maybe Backcourt U.

“I like seeing those three guards play together,” Arizona coach Tommy Lloyd said. “You can throw Pelle in that mix and it’s pretty dynamic with how they can play. I want those guys to get comfortable.

“When we have guys that can play like that, handle the ball, score, and make decisions, it might mean a different guy’s night (on) different nights. So I want those guys to get comfortable, being able to understand that the way we play, we’re gonna get a lot of great opportunities.”

Translation: It might be one guy one night, another guy the next and maybe the next guy the next. And so on and so on.

Johnson had 19 points, going 8 for 8 from the floor. He added five assists.

Boswell went 5 for 7 for 15 points.

Love was 9 for 12, with a game-high 23 points. He added seven assists. One assist come on a fantastic pass to an open Jaden Bradley even though Love could have scored easily, too.

The chemistry with those in the backcourt was seamless. Even if it was just an exhibition.

“I felt pretty good about it,” Lloyd said. “I think they got us off to a decent start. Offensively, they were pretty connected. I think overall the decision-making was pretty solid.”

Defensively, they weren’t as solid as they could have been, but that will improve.

“We’ll see why we gave up 11 made 3s,” he said. “That’s too big of a number.”

Love was perhaps the star of the night. In fact, his best attempt at a basket was one he missed, having gone into the lane for a monster dunk, but was fouled in the process. He sure looked impressive.

“I’ve just asked him to be aggressive and make good basketball decisions,” Lloyd said. “He’s bought into that and that’s how he’s been practicing, overall. I don’t know if we’ll see that level of efficiency every night, but he’s capable of doing some great things.”

And as a group as well. Dylan Anderson, who got the start because of the aforementioned injuries, said he loves his guards, on so many levels.

“They just they just make it easier for us because they’re their control,” he said. “They have confidence in themselves. They have confidence in us, it just makes everything else easier for us.”

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