No. 15 Arizona Edges Marquette, 48-43

Dec. 18, 2004

Box Score

By Arnie Stapleton

Milwaukee (AP) - With leading scorer Salim Stoudamire benched, No. 15 Arizona relied on Chris Rodgers' 16 points and key late layup to beat Marquette 48-43 Saturday despite the Wildcats' lowest scoring output in nearly 20 years.

Arizona coach Lute Olson didn't say why he sidelined Stoudamire. The player was coming off a career-low one field-goal attempt in a 67-62 win over Utah last week, just Stoudamire's third scoreless game in 101 at Arizona.

Neither team scored much Saturday, combining for only three field goals over the last nine minutes. Arizona (7-2) hadn't been held to so few points since a 50-41 loss to Alabama in the 1985 NCAA tournament.

Rodgers' crucial layup came in the final minute when he blew past Steve Novak into an open lane. Hassan Adams added 14 points for the visitors, including two free throws with 4.1 seconds left to seal the victory.

Arizona trailed 43-42 when Adams sank two free throws with 2:06 remaining. The Golden Eagles found it harder and harder to get off a good shot against the athletic Wildcats never regained the lead.

Nearly half of Marquette's shots (24 of 49) were 3-pointers, and the Golden Eagles only sank seven of them.

Marquette (9-1), whose 34-game home winning streak ended, got 14 points from Travis Diener, who became the school's career leading 3-point shooter but was just 5-of-17 from the floor. Novak scored 11 points.

Diener's four 3-pointers gave him 245, one more than Rob Logterman's old mark.

Stoudamire was hardly missed in the first half. Marquette, coming off an emotional victory over then-No. 24 Wisconsin last week, missed 12 of its first 13 shots Saturday and fell behind the Wildcats 16-3.

Diener (21.1-point average) and Novak (15.3), the Golden Eagles' top two scorers, combined to shoot 3-for-15 from the floor in the first half, which ended with Marquette trailing 25-19. During a halftime promotion, a student blew out his knee while driving for a layup.

After the break, the Golden Eagles looked to be wearing down from their big comeback, missing five of six free throws while the Wildcats were in a dry spell themselves.

Novak's 3-pointer from the left side gave Marquette just its second lead, 43-42, with 4:15 remaining.

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