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PACIFIC 10 ROUNDUP : It Isn’t Easy, but Arizona Beats Villanova, 72-64

From Associated Press

Villanova, which has defeated No. 19 Georgetown, No. 20 Louisiana State and No. 8 Syracuse this season, almost beat No. 6 Arizona Saturday at Villanova, Pa., but the the Wildcats from the Pacific 10 Conference overcame some distracting circumstances to win, 72-64.

“We had a highly emotional game on Thursday night (a 74-71 conference victory over Arizona State) and then had trouble getting to Philadelphia,” Coach Lute Olson said. “We didn’t arrive until 5 p.m. Friday.

“Then we have a very tough, physical game with Villanova. I’m really pleased with the way we responded.”

Chris Mills, who led all scorers with 26 points, didn’t mind the physical aspect at all.

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“It was a lot of fun,” the 6-foot-6 sophomore said. “There was a lot of pushing and shoving, but I don’t mind that. I think sometimes, though, the home team gets a little edge there.

“Villanova doesn’t have a lot of height, but they’re a real good team.”

Arizona’s starting front line is 6-11 Brian Williams, 6-10 Sean Rooks and Mills. The Wildcats also use 7-foot Ed Stokes and 6-8 Wayne Womack.

Villanova (9-7) had a 36-32 lead with 16:42 to play, but Arizona (15-2) went on a 14-3 run, taking a 46-39 lead with 11:45 left. After Villanova pulled to within 50-49, Arizona moved out again, taking a 57-52 lead on a basket by Matt Muehlebach with five minutes left.

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Oregon State 70, Washington 60--The Beavers, who lost their first Pac-10 game Thursday night to Washington State, 99-77, at Pullman, Wash., almost lost to the Huskies at Seattle.

Washington led by as many as 11 points in the second half and looked to be in control after Brent Merritt’s three-point basket gave the Huskies a 49-40 lead with 12:35 left.

But that’s when Kevin Harris, Chad Scott, Teo Alibegovic and Charles McKinney made consecutive three-point shots to give Oregon State (10-5 overall, 4-1 in the Pac-10) the lead for good at 52-49.

Washington (10-5, 2-4) trailed, 62-58, with less than four minutes left, but the Beavers made their last eight free-throw attempts to clinch the victory.

Alibegovic scored 15 of his game-high 21 points in the second half. Doug Meekins led Washington with 20 points.

Washington State 82, Oregon 79--Ken Critton’s dunk with 57 seconds remaining at Pullman lifted the Cougars to victory.

Terrell Brandon of the Ducks (7-8, 2-3) scored a game-high 26 points, but missed a last-second three-point attempt that would have sent the game into overtime.

Neil Derrick led Washington State (12-4, 4-2) with 22 points. Richard Lucas had 20 points and a game-high 13 rebounds for Oregon.

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