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Arizona is back on track

PACIFIC 10

January 25, 2008|Robyn Norwood | From Times Staff and Wire Reports

So much for role reversal.

Washington State's players walked into McKale Center in Tucson as the No. 6 team in the country Thursday and walked out losers after Arizona's resounding 76-64 upset.

Jerryd Bayless, who didn't play in three of Arizona's six losses because of injury, had 23 points and six assists and Chase Budinger scored 22 as the Wildcats buried Washington State from three-point range, making 12 of 21 (57.1%).

In stark contrast to last season, Arizona also made plays on the other end.

Jordan Hill blocked six shots, and Bayless' defense on Derrick Low helped hold Washington State's leading scorer to five points. He didn't score until 2:39 remained, and unlike in their loss to UCLA, the Cougars didn't have a desperate rally in them.

"Hill's improved, Budinger, Bayless. You can see that, and they're starting to play physical," said Washington State Coach Tony Bennett, whose team fell to 16-2 overall and 4-2 in the Pacific 10 Conference. "They were intense, had energy, and [Arizona interim Coach Kevin O'Neill] really had them revved up."

Arizona (13-6, 3-3) which lost three of its first four Pac-10 games but has won its last two, plays USC and UCLA in Los Angeles next week.

-- Robyn Norwood

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Washington 72, Arizona State 61 -- Jon Brockman had 21 points and 16 rebounds to help the Huskies (12-7, 3-3) hand the Sun Devils (14-4, 4-2) their first home loss of the season. The Huskies beat the Sun Devils for the 11th consecutive time, the longest such streak in the Pac-10.

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