Arizona Defeats UMKC 81-62

Nov. 19, 2007

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) - Jerryd Bayless scored 20 points and added nine assists and nine rebounds, and Arizona defeated UMKC 81-62 on Monday night.

Bayless, a freshman from Phoenix, has led the Wildcats in scoring in two of his first three college games. Bayless hit 5-of-7 shots from the floor and 8-of-9 from the free-throw line.

Daniel Dillon scored a career-high 14 points, hitting all four of his field goal attempts, including three 3-pointers, and all three of his free throws. Jordan Hill added 14 points for the Wildcats (2-1), who shot 64.1 percent from the floor.

Brent Stephens scored 16 points and Reggie Hamilton added 11 for UMKC (1-3).

Early on, the listless Wildcats struggled against a team that lost its opener to Kansas by 23 points and lost by 15 at Northern Arizona on Saturday night. UMKC went on a 16-5 run midway through the first half to take a 20-16 lead with 6:44 to play.

Arizona regained the lead on a 7-0 run by Bayless, who hit a 3-point shot and made four straight free throws in a 42-second span.

Arizona led 37-29 at halftime despite having nearly as many turnovers (9) as field goals (11). The Kangaroos dominated the paint, outscoring Arizona 13-0 on second-chance points.

The Wildcats found their stride offensively after halftime. Bayless, Chase Budinger and Laval Lucas-Perry each hit 3-pointers to spark a 12-4 run that gave Arizona a comfortable 49-33 lead three minutes into the second half.

The Wildcats needed a game against an overmatched opponent. They had lost five of their last six home games against major conference opponents, including a 75-72 loss to Virginia on Saturday night. Arizona dropped out of the Associated Press Top 25 a few hours before tip-off on Monday.

It was Arizona's third game under interim coach Kevin O'Neill, who took control when Lute Olson went on a personal leave of absence.

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