Arizona did what was expected on Monday night as it defeated NAU 77-44 at McKale.
Aaron Gordon scored the first points of the night as Gaellan Bewernick matched it. Gordon and Max Jacobsen then exchanged one free-throw each and a bucket by Brandon Ashley gave Arizona the 5-3 lead with 15:58 left in regulation.
Nick Johnson scored his first points of the game, but Aaseem Dixon came back and made two consecutive threes before Brandon Ashley’s two free-throws tied the game at nine with about 13 minutes left in the half. There was then an exchange of baskets by T.J. McConnell and Ako Kaluna before another timeout.
Johnson hit back to back to threes before Bewernick was able to score. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson then got a bucket and Jordin Mayes hit two free-throws to extend Arizona’s lead to 21-13 with 7:27 left in the first half.
After a Bewernick basket, Hollis-Jefferson got a three-point play. Johnson made two from the line and hit a three as McConnell added a free-throw. Hollis-Jefferson made two free-throws before Ashley scored and York added four more points.
The 17-0 Arizona run was ended by a basket from Quinton Upshur, as Arizona led 38-17 with 51 seconds left in the half. Two free-throws by Ashley and one by Johnson then put the Wildcats up 41-17 going into the half.
Jacobsen started the half with a basket before Upshur added another. After a score by Gordon, Upshur hit a three-pointer. Ashley then scored, followed by a basket from Johnson and a three-point play by Gordon that put the Wildcats up 50-24 with about 15 minutes left in regulation. Dixon hit a three and Johnson followed with a two before an Arizona timeout with the UA up 52-27.
Kaluna proceeded to make a three before Hollis-Jefferson and Mayes went one of two at the line. Christopher Miller did the same, but Mayes scored and then found York for a three soon after. Len Springs and Gordon exchanged one free-throw each, as Arizona led 60-34 with 8:05 left in regulation.
Kris Yanku scored for the Lumberjacks and Springs added another before York was able to score. Johnson added a jumper, but Yanku matched it the next time down court.
Hollis-Jefferson scored to put Arizona up 67-41 with four minutes left and the rest played out like normal.