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UCLA ends Pac-12 Tournament run for Arizona women's basketball team in Las Vegas

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The Arizona Wildcats huddle around to draw up a play during a timeout in McKale Center in Tucson, Arizona on Sunday, Dec. 6, 2020. (Courtesy of Mike Christy/Arizona Athletics)

The Arizona women’s basketball team fell to UCLA in the semifinals of the Pac-12 tournament on Friday, March 5 with a score of 58-49.

The Wildcats were led by Aari McDonald, who scored 24 points on 33% (8/24) from the field and 33% (2/6) from the three. No other player on the Wildcats scored in double-figures tonight.

Arizona shot the ball 32% (18/57) from the field and 18% (3/17) from the three. UCLA barely shot better from the field, shooting 33% (18/55) from the field and 27% (3-11) from the three. 

Arizona only had four assists the whole night. This was because, for most of the night, Arizona stood around watching Aari McDonald go one on one with different UCLA defenders. A ratio of four assists on 21 total field goals will rarely win you games in the Pac-12. The only two players to receive assists tonight were McDonald and Cate Reese, who both had two on the night.

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“For me, an indication of the game and our offense was four assists on 18 field goals,” head coach Adia Barnes said. “You're not going to win a lot of games like that. UCLA played better than we did today, they deserved to win, they’re a good team.” 

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Arizona, at times, did not box out UCLA rebounders which allowed the Bruins to keep control of the game down the stretch. The Wildcats were out-rebounded 41 to 35. Not a huge margin but one that Barnes said was the true difference-maker tonight. 

“I know they were only plus-six but the times and manners they got them, really hurt us. I thought in the first half especially, they got all the fifty-fifty balls, they got all the passion plays we usually get.”

With Arizona losing this game, this ends their chance to win the Pac-12 championship and will look onto the NCAA tournament later this month. 


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Updated April 12, 2021