Punch first. That’s what the Arizona Wildcats want to do every game. They did just that as he en route to an 84-66 win over Arizona State rivals in front of 9,495 fans in the first game after the holiday break.
UA head coach Adya Burns I wasn’t sure if that would happen.
“Considering just the last few weeks, we didn’t know what to expect today. We really crawled against Baylor,” Barnes said. “We played our best game of the season. And I was okay with UTA, and then it was Christmas break, and I was mentally on track for 3 games in 5 days.So what do we do?”
The Wildcats came out quickly, hitting 6 of their first 7 shots, while the Sun Devils started the game 0-3. Despite a 26-12 first quarter set the tone for the game and he outscored the Wildcats 18-16 in the second quarter, ASU failed to show any real threat.
“It’s a big thing for us. We just got off to a strong start, not flat,” Gard said Jade Roville“And I think you’ve seen in the Baylor game that you can be aggressive in traps and you can run. If you start the game like that, I think you can keep it up for the whole game.”
seniors before the game Esmery Martinez won the basketball to mark UT Arlington’s promotion to the 1,000-point club on December 20.
Martinez led the Wildcats with his fourth double-double of the season. She had 21 points and 10 rebounds in assists and steals.
Martinez was one of four Wildcats to score in double figures.who joined her Shaina Pellington (14 points), Kate Reese (13 points), Loville (12 points). Helena Pueyo narrowly missed that threshold with 8 points.
Despite not scoring as many as her fellow starters, Lauren Fields It was an impressive game with 3 assists for just 1 turnover and 4 steals without committing a foul. Her steals were tied with Pueyo for the best of the game.
“It doesn’t matter, I didn’t even realize Lauren only had a few points,” Barnes said. She continues to be a great starter for us.”
Rovil, Pueyo and Pellington led the team with 4 assists each. That was an important point for the team, as a group he had 36 shots and he had 24 assists.
ASU’s Ty Skinner She scored 26 with four rebounds and three steals, showing why she’s so important to the Sun Devils. However, she ran into foul difficulty and she scored her fourth foul in 4 minutes and 39 seconds, advancing her into the fourth quarter. She fouled out with just under two minutes left in the game.
“I think the defense needs to be tighter,” Skinner said.
The Sun Devils allowed Arizona to shoot 55.4% from the field. In the third quarter, the Wildcats were successful on her 70.6% shots.
As for Arizona’s defense, the frontcourt was able to limit ASU to 28 points in the paint while limiting fouls. Maya NnajiMartinez and Reese committed a total of five fouls despite playing 22 to 24 minutes each.
“Playing defense is the most important thing we’ve had to do,” Martinez said.
Nnaji and her fellow freshmen all played wide. Nnaji she led the group in less than 24 minutes.both Kailyn Gilbert When Paris Clark Play for 15 minutes, Remia Hylton Less than 7 minutes playing time.
“If you play long hours, you’ll find that like Paris, he’s a little bit tired,” Barnes said. “And that’s the adrenaline of this game. And the speed of the game is different from practice. So I think it’s important to get a little bit more in shape. And let them make mistakes. You know, Kailyn made some mistakes, we pulled her and then put her back.”
The Wildcats outscored the Sun Devils by 14 points in both the first and third quarters, which allowed them to give the rookies considerable playing time. Barnes had all four of his freshmen and his sophomores Maddie Connor On the court together in the final 4:44 of the game, ASU was able to cut into what was once a 26-point lead.
“I think it’s good for them and makes them better every game. That’s what we want long-term,” Barnes said.