Nov. 24, 1997
Eagles Fall to No. 1-ranked Arizona
LAHAINA, Hawaii - Mike Bibby had a basket and assisted on three others in a key second-quarter run as top-ranked Arizona kept its half of the bargain for an NCAA Championship rematch with a 99-69 rout of Boston College in the first round of the Maui Classic in Lahaina, Hawaii.
Bibby finished with 22 points and seven assists for Arizona (2-0), which awaits the winner of the Kentucky-George Washington game in the semifinals. Should Kentucky advance, it would be a rematch of last season's championship game, won by Arizona in overtime, 84-79.
Antonio Granger scored 21 points and Kostas Maglos added 17 for Boston College (2-1), which lost for the first time under first-year coach Al Skinner. The Eagles will play the loser of the Kentucky-George Washington game and can finish no better than fifth.
Arizona led 25-20 after one quarter. After a three-pointer by Michael Dickerson pushed the lead to eight, Granger buried two three-pointers around a layup by Bennett Davison to draw the Eagles within 30-26 with 7:23 to play in the half.
But the Wildcats took off on a 12-3 run to take control of the game. Bibby fed A.J. Bramlett for a dunk and drained a 17-footer for an eight-point Arizona lead. Duane Woodward answered with a three-point play for Boston College, but Bibby hooked up with Eugene Edgerson on two baskets around two foul shots by Dickerson to give Arizona a 40-29 lead at the 4:27 mark.
Bramlett capped the run with a four-foot baseline jumper. The Eagles, though, were able to close within 45-38 on a 35-footer by Granger right before halftime.
The Wildcats left no doubt to the outcome by starting the second half with a 13-2 burst. Bramlett had a hook shot while Miles Simon made a driving layup to make it 49-38 less than a minute into the half.
Mickey Curley had a basket for Boston College, but Dickerson and Bibby drilled consecutive three-pointers before Simon ended the run with a three-point play to give Arizona a 58-40 lead with 7:19 left in the third quarter.
Boston College came no closer than 13 points thereafter.
"We worked on stuff they did, but we did it with our reserves, not Boston College," said Arizona coach Lute Olson. "But the guys adjusted pretty well."
The Wildcats shot a blistering 62 percent (21-of-34) from the field in the second half and 59 percent (39-of-66) overall. Six players finished in double figures as Dickerson had 17, Bramlett and Simon 11 and Davison and Donnell Harris netted 10 apiece.
Curley netted 12 for Boston College, which shot 47 percent (28-of-60) from the field but 4-of-16 from three-point range.