UA fans disappointed by Pac-12 loss but confident about NCAA tourney
Las Vegas — This past weekend was Las Vegas became Wildcat Country during the Pac-12 tournament.
No. 2 seed UCLA defeated No. 1 seed Arizona in the championship game 75-71 at MGM Grand Garden Arena before a sold out crowd of 12,916 that largely favored the Wildcats.
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UA alumnus Bill Meldon, class of ’58, blamed the referees for the loss but remained confident in the Wildcats.
“I thought the game was poorly officiated but the ‘Cats will do better next time,” Meldon said.
Arizona fans cheer for the Wildcats during the semifinals of the Pac-12 tournament last week in Las Vegas.
Last year an officiating controversy at the Pac-12 tournament led to the resignation of Pac-12 coordinator of officials Ed Rush.
The 2013 controversy didn’t seem to scare away many UA fans and neither did the ticket prices.
(1) Arizona vs. (16) Weber State
When: Friday, 11:10 a.m. MST/PDT
Class of ‘04 UA alumnus David Garcia did not purchase tickets for any of UA’s games because of the ticket prices.
According to a report by Vivid Seats, the Pac-12 tournament has the highest single game median ticket price of $125 of any NCAA conference tournament. In second was the Big 12 tournament at $123 and the Big East was third at $110.
Some fans went to Las Vegas with the hopes of buying a cheap ticket from rival fans whose team lost.
“Even though UA fans don’t like Oregon fans, I had to buy my ticket from Oregon fans because they lost early on,” Gamez said. “I wasn’t able to get tickets before hand.”
Despite the loss against the Bruins, dedicated Wildcat fans are optimistic for the NCAA tournament.
“We are a No. 1 seed so this Pac-12 loss doesn’t matter,” said Justin Gamez, class of ‘12. “We’ll do better in the NCAA tournament.”
Other fans, like Garcia, think loss will help the Wildcats go far in the NCAA tournament.
“It was a hard game but I will embrace the loss because it will toughen up the team to play in the Final Four,” Garcia said.
No. 1 seed Arizona will kick off NCAA tournament play against No. 16 seed Weber State on Friday at 11:10 a.m. in San Diego on TNT.
—Follow Daniela Vizcarra @vizcarra_dw