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No. 9 Arizona slips past Utah

9:59 PM, Feb 17, 2013   |    comments
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Salt Lake City, UT (Sports Network) - Mark Lyons scored a game-high 18 points and No. 9 Arizona escaped Huntsman Center with a 68-64 victory over Utah to avoid a three-game losing streak.

Brandon Ashley and Solomon Hill each chipped in 10 points for the Wildcats (21-4, 9-4 Pac-12), who were coming off losses to California and Colorado and will likely see their streak of 13 straight weeks ranked in the top 10 end on Monday.

Jarred DuBois led Utah (11-14, 3-10) with 16 points, while Jason Washburn and Jeremy Olsen netted 15 and 12, respectively, in the setback.

The Utes, who were coming off a win over Arizona State, never led on Sunday, but used a 12-2 run to tie things coming down the stretch.

"We fought, our team fought until the very end. We got down big in the second half, came back and we just came up short," Washburn said.

Hill only had one basket in the second half, but it was a big one as it stopped Utah's momentum and broke a 51-51 tie with just over six minutes remaining.

Lyons converted a three-point play the next time down for some breathing room, and Arizona kept the hosts at bay from there.

Utah was trailing 64-59 inside the final minute, and Jordan Loveridge was off the mark on a 3-pointer from the corner. Ashley missed the front end of a 1- and-1 to give the ball back to the Utes, but DuBois was smothered inside and missed a contested shot to essentially end the comeback bid.

"We are happy with the win, but our team continues to make the same mistakes we made two months ago and we have to get better as we move forward if we want to accomplish something special in March," Arizona head coach Sean Miller said.

Utah came in as the conference's leader in defensive field goal percentage, but the Wildcats shot an efficient 50 percent (11-of-22) from the field in the first half, then made their first four shots after the break to build a 41-28 advantage.

Near the midway point of the second half, the Utes made their move, as Olsen scored twice inside to bookend 3-pointers by Dakarai Tucker and DuBois during a 12-2 run that tied things. Washburn's tip-in capped the rally for a 51-51 game with 7 1/2 minutes to go.

Game Notes

The Wildcats shot 47 percent for the game, eight percent better than Utah's opponents converted coming in ... Arizona has not dropped three straight games since Feb. 13-25, 2010 ... Olsen came in averaging less than three points per game ... Arizona has won seven straight meetings against Utah.

The Sports Network

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