The Arizona Wildcats were at a crossroads on Tuesday night. After two straight losses and the roughest stretch of schedule approaching, a road win over the New Mexico St. Aggies was critical. It wasn't pretty for the full 40 minutes, but UA was able to come away with a 83-76 victory.
Josiah Turner and Nick Johnson, two of the most heralded freshmen to ever arrive in Tucson, had huge games. Turner had the best performance of his career and scored 12 points, brought in six rebonds and dished out four assists. He fouled out and committed four turnovers, but the Wildcats were a completely different team when the point guard was on the floor. Nick Johnson scored 19 points in the first start of his career and threw down multiple highlight reel dunks in front of a sellout crowd in Las Cruces.
Jesse Perry continued to be a double-double threat and ended the night with 15 points and 12 rebounds. Solomon Hill also had the best game of his season, contributing with 12 points, six rebounds and a team-high seven assists. Hill is undoubtably the best player on the team and the strides he has made since last season are remarkable.
New Mexico State was led by Wendell McKines, who scored 28 points in 31 minutes of play. Christian Kabongo recorded 15 points, while Hamidu Rahman dominated the paint with 13 points and eight rebounds.
This Wildcat team remains a work in progress, but this is a huge win for the program. UA will return home and take on the NAU Lumberjacks on Saturday afternoon.
For more on the Wildcats win, visit AZ Desert Swarm.