10:00 PM ET, December 29, 2005
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) -- Hassan Adams says the unranked Arizona Wildcats are too busy winning games to worry about falling out of the Top 25."We like flying under the radar," Adams said after scoring 25 points Thursday night in a 70-52 win over Washington State in the Pac-10 opener for both teams. "If we make it to the Final Four, we won't care what (ranking) number is beside our name."The Wildcats (8-3), ranked in 312 consecutive regular-season polls until last week, opened defense of their Pac-10 regular-season championship by extending their winning streak to six. The Cougars, 7-3, were led by Derrick Low's 11 points.Adams, the Pac-10 scoring leader heading into Thursday's games with 19.3 points per game, keyed pivotal Arizona scoring spurts in both halves.Adams scored six points in the 11-4 run at the end of the first half that provided Arizona with a 35-26 halftime lead. Arizona led 49-32 six minutes into the second half after Adams poured in the last 10 Wildcats points -- capped by back-to-back dunks -- in the 14-6 run that started the half."We didn't have a matchup against him," Washington State coach Dick Bennett said.The Wildcats outrebounded Washington State 47-27, limited the Cougars to 33.3 percent shooting from the floor and forced 18 turnovers. The field-goal percentage was a season low for WSU and an Arizona opponent."They collapsed under the basket (on defense) better than any Arizona team that I've coached against," Bennett said. "That's something all great teams have.""Our defense got them out of their comfort zone," Adams said. "We limited them to one shot, and with our guards getting the rebounds, we were pushing the fast break."The Wildcats were led in rebounding by guards Mustafa Shakur (nine) and Adams (eight)."We're a quick team defensively," Arizona coach Lute Olson said. "We're a quick team to convert turnovers.""They just dominated us," Bennett said. "We just could not come close to their athleticism."The Cougars scored 10 unanswered points to pull within seven at 49-42 midway through the second half, but never came closer.Marcus Williams, a freshman from Seattle, went 7-for-10 from the field and scored 15 points for Arizona.Low hit 3 of 5 from 3-point range, but was 0-for-8 from inside the arc.The loss was WSU's 40th in the last 41 games with Arizona.
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Team Stat Comparison
|FG Made-Attempted||29-68 (.426)||17-51 (.333)|
|3P Made-Attempted||3-10 (.300)||7-16 (.438)|
|FT Made-Attempted||9-11 (.818)||11-13 (.846)|
|Fouls (Tech/Flagrant)||15 (0/0)||18 (0/0)|