Arizona Basketball

Arizona advances to second round of NCAA tourney with sound second half vs. LBSU

SALT LAKE CITY – No. 2-seeded Arizona played a solid second half – defensively and offensively – to advance to the NCAA tournament’s West Region second round, beating Long Beach State 85-65 on Thursday.

The magic continues for Arizona, which fell in the first round last season. And the magic ended for Long Beach State, which won its conference tournament in grand style and after its coach Dan Monson was fired just days earlier.

Arizona is now 26-8 overall. LBSU ends its season at 21-15.

Arizona scored the first two baskets of the second half and never looked back.

Caleb Love (photo courtesy of Arizona Athletics)

It was helped by a team-record in the NCAAs with 13 made 3-pointers.

Arizona had a lead by as many as 24 points — 79-55 — in the second half.

Kylan Boswell finished with a career-high 20 points.

Caleb Love had 18 points, 11 rebounds and five assists.

Arizona hit six of its first 11 shots in the second half, going on a 14-2 run to start to pull away.

With 16:13 left in the game, Pelle Larsson hit a 3-pointer and Long Beach State called a timeout.

Tommy Lloyd pumped his fists as Arizona took a 55-37 lead.

A big difference was Arizona got after it defensively, with Oumar Ballo leading the way inside. He had three blocks and then a fourth.

Then Larsson took a charge.

A couple of possessions later, Love hit his second 3-pointer to make it 62-41 with 13:30 left.

That was Arizona’s largest lead of the game before LBSU closed to within 15 at 66-51.

In that span, the Beach went 1 for 8 from the floor, but Arizona also went dry, failing to score in a 2-and-a-half minutes.

Still, Arizona had a comfortable lead, 62-43 with 11:18 left.

Arizona went into the half with a 41-35 lead.

Arizona played poorly in the first half, shooting just 38.5 percent. But was helped by hitting 7 of 18 shots from 3-point range.

It was also helped by going on two 7-0 runs to help keep up and eventually pass LBSU, which went on a 13-0 run midway through the half.

Boswell led Arizona with 11 points in the half. Love added seven points, but hit just 3 of 9 shots.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
To Top