The Arizona Wildcats stepped up when it mattered most on Thursday night and used 14 three-pointers as they won 81-72 over the St. John's Red Storm.
In what was one of the more entertaining games in recent history, Arizona saw five players score double-digits and played a total of 11 on the night. Solomon Hill led the way 15 points, six rebounds and four assists, while Jesse Perry came up a rebound short of a double-double.
Kyle Fogg and Nick Johnson each hit three 3's and Josiah Turner played his best game as a Wildcat. Playing just a few minutes away from his childhood home -- and the area he sustained a gunshot wound just two months ago -- Kevin Parrom chipped in for six points, four rebounds and three assists against the Johnnies.
St. John's took an eight point lead with just under 10 minutes remaining in the game. Instead of crumbling under the bright lights, Arizona dug in on defense and refused to lose. They converted all six of their free throws in the closing minutes.
The Red Storm battled for most of the game, but their inexperience and a lack of depth would eventually cost them the game. Steve Lavin played just seven players, and leading scorer Nurideen Lindsey fouled out late in the contest. D'angelo Harrison chipped in for 16 points, while Phil Greene and Moe Harkless combined for 25 off the bench.
In our game preview, we said whichever team gets better play out of their power forward would win. Jesse Perry scored 11 points -- seven in the second half -- hauled in nine rebounds and had three blocks. God'sgift Achiuwa scored four points and brought down only four rebounds. Perry won the battle and his team won because of it.
UA will face Mississippi State on Friday night in the 2K Sports Classic championship game. Tipoff is set for 6:30 p.m. in New York, which is 4:30 in Tucson. The game will be shown on ESPN2.