Unlv 42 16 58
Arizona 39 24 63
Date of game: 12/7/2013

Recap: Arizona vs. UNLV

Tucson, AZ (SportsNetwork.com) - T.J. McConnell and Brandon Ashley both scored 13 points to lead the second-ranked Arizona Wildcats to a 63-58 win over the UNLV Runnin' Rebels.

McConnell added seven rebounds, six assists and three steals for an Arizona team that could be the new No. 1 after top-ranked Michigan State lost to North Carolina on Wednesday.

The Wildcats (9-0) have not sat atop the AP poll since March 10, 2003.

"It's an honor that you earn. It never comes your way," said Arizona coach Sean Miller. "There's not a player, coach or even our fans that doesn't want to say that they've watched or participated or were part of the No. 1 team in the nation.

"How long we have that is not up to us, but I feel like we've earned it through our performance. We have something that I think is an honor. I'm happy for our players and great fans."

Nick Johnson and Kaleb Tarczewski had 12 points apiece in the Wildcats' 13th straight home win over a non-conference opponent.

Bryce Dejean-Jones paced UNLV (3-4) with 16 points, while Khem Birch posted a double-double of 12 points and 10 rebounds.

An offensively driven first half gave way to a grind-it-out, defensive second frame.

Arizona opened the second half on a 6-0 run to go up 45-42, but the Rebels answered with six straight points.

Going back-and-forth was a theme in a contest that saw the lead change hands 18 times.

The Wildcats grabbed a 60-57 lead when McConnell dished to Rondae Hollis- Jefferson for a slam with 2:20 remaining. After Birch made 1-of-2 free throws, Aaron Gordon blocked Dejean-Jones' bid out of bounds. Once the UNLV possession resumed, Birch missed a shot from the lane.

McConnell then found Ashley for a layup, extending Arizona's lead to 62-58 with 30 seconds remaining.

After a 3-point try by Dejean-Jones was off the mark, McConnell sank 1-of-2 at the foul line with 15.3 seconds left to seal the win.

The Rebels shot 64.0 percent and the Wildcats made 51.5 percent from the field in a first half that ended with the visitors up 42-39. UNLV converted only 28 percent of its shots in the second half, while Arizona's shooting dropped to 32.4. Both teams were 0-for-8 from 3-point range over the final 20 minutes.

Game Notes

Hollis-Jefferson had nine points, seven rebounds and six assists ... Arizona scored 44 of its points from the paint ... The Wildcats owned a 41-29 edge on the boards. They have won the rebounding battle in all nine games this season ... The last time UNLV played the second-ranked team in the country in a true road game was at Arkansas on Feb. 10, 1991 ... UNLV played its first six games this season at home ... The Rebels still lead the all-time series, 11-7.

The Inside Line: Kyle Busch's chances of making the Chase

Kyle Busch won Sunday's road course race in Sonoma, California, but he still has a long way to go to become eligible for a spot in the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship.

Extra Points: Bennett is far down on Seahawks' list

NFL players have a very short shelf life to make significant amounts of money so it's tough to fault anyone who has outperformed a contract when they go knocking on the door to ask for more.

Mackanin to remain Phillies interim manager

Pete Mackanin will remain interim manager of the Philadelphia Phillies for the remainder of the season, the team announced Tuesday.

Report: Thunder sign Singler to extension

The Oklahoma City Thunder have reportedly retained restricted free agent forward Kyle Singler with a five-year contract extension.

Stay Connected with WDEF News 12
Inergize Digital This site is hosted and managed by Inergize Digital.
Mobile advertising for this site is available on Local Ad Buy.