Arizona found itself in another close game, but was able to pull away late in the second half as it…
Tigers fall to Wildcats
The Tigers shot 38.5 percent from the field, but made 5-of-12 from long distance. Clemson struggled at the free throw stripe, converting just 9-of-17 attempts. Arizona outrebounded Clemson by 10 in the second half, and was +11 for the game (44-33). The Wildcats struggled to shoot the ball, hitting just 22-of-62 (.355) overall and 5-of-16 (.313) from three. Arizona, however, was outstanding at the free throw line with a 17-for-20 (.850) clip. Clemson had three players in double figures, led by Milton Jennings with 15. The 6-foot-9 senior returned from a two-game suspension to make 5-of-7 shots, including 3-of-4 from deep. K.J. McDaniels added 13 points, while Adonis Filer chipped in with 10. McDaniels had four of Clemson's 12 blocked shots, while senior Devin Booker led the way with a career-high five swats. The 12 blocks were a program-high under third-year Head Coach Brad Brownell.
The first half featured a strong run to start the game by the Wildcats. Arizona led 12-4 less than seven minutes into the game on a layup by Kaleb Tarczewski. The lead would grow to as much as 14 points after Mark Lyons scored five straight points to push Arizona into a 22-8 edge with 8:53 remaining. Clemson gathered itself and ended the remainder of the opening half on a 16-6 run. McDaniels punctuated the run with 35 seconds left when he flew in for a follow slam to ignite the crowd of 8,509 in Littlejohn.
Clemson tied it up at the 16:16 mark in the second half when Filer drove the length of the floor for a layup and was fouled, making the free throw to knot the game at 35 apiece. Three minutes later, Clemson took its first lead 37-36 on a driving layup from the left side of the lane by point guard Rod Hall. The lead grew to 42-36 when Hall's three as the shot clock expired went in from the right wing.
After a high-arching banked shot from McDaniels with 11:28 to play, Clemson made only one shot (a Jennings three) over the next seven and a half minutes. Arizona put together a 30-7 run over eight minutes and 14 seconds of game time to shut the door on the Tigers' upset bid.
Lyons led Sean Miller's team with a game-high 20 points, while sophomore Nick Johnson added 13. Solomon Hill struggled to shoot the ball, but contributed seven of Arizona's 20 offensive rebounds – tying an opponent high for a Brownell-coached Clemson team.
The Tigers take a week off due to final exams, and return to action on Saturday, Dec. 15 to play Florida A&M. The game will tip off at 7:00 PM in Littlejohn Coliseum.
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