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Hot-shooting Arizona runs over North Dakota State 97-45

Nov 16, 2021

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) Christian Koloko had 16 points to lead five in double figures as Arizona routed North Dakota State 97-45 on Tuesday night.

Arizona (3-0) has won two in a row by more than 50 points for the first time since the 1920-21 season. The last time the Wildcats had two 50-point wins in a season was 1997-98.

Azuolas Tubelis and Bennedict Mathurin scored 15 points apiece for Arizona. Kerr Kriisa added 12 points and Oumar Ballo had 10. Mathurin and Kriisa combined for seven 3-pointers.

The Wildcats shot 51.5% from the floor and made nearly half of their 3-point attempts (13 of 27).

The Wildcats scored the first 11 points and built a 21-point halftime lead. They opened the second half with a 31-8 run and had a 44-point advantage with about 12 minutes remaining.

Jarius Cook scored 10 points for North Dakota State (2-2).

Arizona will play its next two games at Las Vegas in the Roman Main Event. The Bison return home for their next two.


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Postgame Notes vs. North Dakota State

  • Arizona allowed 23 points to the Bison in the first half, the second-fewest allowed in a half this season
  • The Wildcats shot 52% (17-33) from the floor in the first half, making it three straight games shooting above 50% in the first half.
  • For the third straight game, the Wildcats had a 20+ point lead at halftime
  • Arizona finished the game shooting 51.5% (34-66) from the field, the second straight game over 50%. For the season, Arizona is shooting 50.3% from the floor.
  • North Dakota State scored just 45 points in the game, meaning Arizona has held each of its first three opponents to 52 or fewer points. It's the first time Arizona has done that since the 1949-50 season.
  • The 52-point margin of victory is the second straight 50+ point win. The last time Arizona did that in a SEASON was during the 1996-97 season. The last time Arizona did that in back-to-back games was during the 1920-21 season.
  • As of games played on Nov. 16, Arizona is one of four teams in the country that has not trailed at all so far this season (St. John's, Boston College, Charlotte).
  • After 21 assists against North Dakota State, the Wildcats have recorded 20 or more assists in three straight games. The last time that happened for Arizona was Nov. 17, Nov. 19 and Nov. 21, 2007.
  • Bennedict Mathurin hauled down five rebounds in the first half after entering the game with seven for the season. He finished the game with eight rebounds to go with his 15 points (3-7 3FG). He also matched his career high with four assists.
  • Christian Koloko continued his strong play to start the year, dropping a game-high 16 points (7-10 FG) while grabbing five rebounds and blocking two more shots (12 for the season). The seven FG made is a career high.
  • Kerr Kriisa was 4 of 8 from the three point line for his 12 points, with the four made 3FG matching his career high.
  • Oumar Ballo was a perfect 4 of 4 at the free throw line against North Dakota State on his way to 10 points and seven rebounds in 13 minutes of action. For the season, he is 16 of 18 at the charity stripe, equaling the number of free throws made all of last season at Gonzaga.