Gardner Delivers Again for Arizona

From Associated Press

As he has so many times in his four seasons as Arizona's point guard, Jason Gardner left McKale Center a winner.

Gardner, in the final home game of his outstanding career, scored 21 of his 27 points in the second half Saturday, and the top-ranked Wildcats pulled away to beat Oregon, 88-80, at Tucson.

"He was on fire," teammate Rick Anderson said. "His heart, his attitude and his desire to win are just so good. That's what's going to take us far."

The Wildcats, who improved to 25-2 overall and 17-1 in the conference, trailed much of the game, but finally took control with a 17-2 run that put them up 66-56 with 6:39 to play on Salim Stoudamire's 16-footer.

Stoudamire, benched in the second half against Oregon State on Thursday night because Coach Lute Olson didn't like his attitude, had 19 points, 17 in the second half. Olson said Stoudamire came to his office Friday and apologized.

"He said he felt badly about it and he knew he was wrong," Olson said.

"You could see in how he played today. He made some excellent passes, and I didn't get depressed looking at him."

Stoudamire's consecutive three-point baskets put Arizona ahead 72-60 with 5:35 to go. Channing Frye scored 13, six in the decisive run.

Luke Ridnour had 26 points and seven assists for the Ducks (20-9, 10-8).

No. 17 Stanford 72, No. 22 California 60 -- Josh Childress had 15 points and 10 rebounds at Palo Alto and the Cardinal (23-7, 14-4) continued its dominance of the Golden Bears (20-7, 13-5) at home in clinching second place in the conference.

Brian Wethers had four three-pointers in the second half and finished with 16 points, but Cal shot 33%. Stanford sealed the victory with three-pointers by Matt Lottich, Julius Barnes and Childress in the final minutes.

The Bears considered this game one of their better shots at ending a decade of frustration at Maples Pavilion. The Bears hadn't won there since an 86-61 victory on Feb. 14, 1993.

The Cardinal flustered Joe Shipp, the conference's leading scorer at 21 points per game, in the first half. They got a hand in his face and made it difficult for him to shoot. He was held to seven in the half and finished with 14 on four-for-10 shooting from the field.

Arizona State 74, Oregon State 64 -- Ike Diogu scored 18 points and Curtis Millage and Tommy Smith each had 17 at Tempe, Ariz., to lead the Sun Devils (19-1, 11-7) over the Beavers (13-14, 6-12) to clinch fourth place in the standings.

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