November 25, 2019 / 3:56 AM / 13 days ago

No. 14 Arizona routs Long Beach State after halftime

Nico Mannion had 22 points and eight assists to lead a blistering second-half effort as No. 14 Arizona routed Long Beach State 104-67 on Sunday night in Tucson, Ariz.

Nov 24, 2019; Tucson, AZ, USA; Long Beach State 49ers guard Michael Carter III (1) tries to lay up the ball past Arizona Wildcats forward Ira Lee (11) in the first half at McKale Center. Mandatory Credit: Jacob Snow-USA TODAY Sports

The Wildcats (6-0) scored 66 points after halftime and outscored the Beach (2-4) by 32 points in the second half, as they wrapped up a season-opening six-game homestand. Arizona shot 57.8 percent for the game, came up with 15 steals and connected on 12 of 24 3-point shots.

Mannion, a freshman point guard, hit 3 of 6 attempts from the behind the arc and committed just one turnover. Freshman big man Zeke Nnaji had 21 points and five rebounds, hitting 9 of 13 shots from the field.

Michael Carter III led Long Beach with 11 points. Joshua Morgan and Max De Geest scored 10 apiece.

Arizona guard Max Hazzard had 14 points and hit four 3-pointers off the bench. Another reserve guard, Jemarl Baker, scored 11 points and had seven assists.

Long Beach State was within 40-37 early in the second half before Arizona established control with a 15-2 run.

Nnaji started the spurt with a layup and a free-throw line jumper, followed by 3-point shots from Dylan Smith, Baker and Mannion, whose long-range shot in transition put the Wildcats up 55-39 with 14:46 to go.

The game wasn’t in doubt after that.

Hazzard hit a step-back 3-pointer that ignited another Arizona spurt. Stone Gettings and Josh Green — who finished with 11 points — added three-point plays during the 11-0 outburst that resulted in a 69-43 lead.

Arizona put together an early 9-0 run, capped by a Mannion dunk, to take a 13-4 lead and seemingly be on its way to an expected easy victory. But the Beach hung around and later had a 9-0 run of their own to pull even at 28 with 3:40 to go before halftime.

LBSU took its first lead at 31-30 on De Geest’s 3-pointer, but Arizona scored eight of the final 10 points of the half to take a 38-33 edge. Nnaji had 11 points and five rebounds in the first half.

—Field Level Media

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