LUBBOCK, Texas – Texas Tech called Saturday’s game with Arizona a “white out,” but it turned out to have far more red.
While the Red Raiders wore white uniforms and asked their fans to wear white, the Wildcats chose to wear red – and dominated them during an 85-57 win at United Spirit Arena.
There was also the problem of empty red seats, about 5,000 of them, in fact. While UA struggled at times early in the game and briefly in the second half, the crowd was neither big enough nor vocal enough to create the hostile road environment test that UA coach Sean Miller was seeking.
But the game still served some purposes for Arizona. The Wildcats were able to shoot better than 50 percent from the field for the third straight game, while holding Texas Tech to 34.9 percent.
Moreover, UA kept Texas Tech to just 6-for-21 three-point shooting, in what has been one of the Wildcats’ issues early this season.
Finally, Nick Johnson put up another strong overall game, with 18 points, five rebounds and two steals while Kaleb Tarczewski had 13 rebounds, more than double any of his previous rebounding totals.
Texas Tech cut Arizona's lead to 55-40 on a three-pointer from Texas Tech's Jamal Williams with 13:38 left and another by Daylen Robinson, made it 55-42.
But Johnson came back with a layup with 12:48 to go and the Red Raiders never threatened in any form after that.
In the first half, Arizona unleashed a barrage of three-point shooting, while Tarczewski took over the glass, to take a 45-28 halftime lead.
Mark Lyons and Solomon Hill each hit two three-pointers, while UA made 6 of 13 as a team. Hill was the Wildcats’ leading scorer in the half with 10 points while Lyons had nine.
But it wasn’t all about long-range shooting. UA also had nine rebounds from Tarczewski, and outrebounded Texas Tech 24-14 overall.
The Wildcats also held Texas Tech to just 33 percent field goal shooting, including 3 of 7 from three-point range.
Arizona went on a 9-0 run in the middle of the half to take a 30-20 lead, then a 11-0- run late in the half to go up 43-25.
Through the first 12 minutes, UA took more than half of its shots from three-point range, and it is 6 for 11, getting mostly good looks.
Lyons is 2 for 3 from beyond the arc, hitting his last one from more than 25 feet.
Arizona took a 13-11 lead at the first media timeout (14:48). Nick Johnson has five points and a rebound for UA.
The game started ominously for Arizona when Josh Gray picked up a turnover from Hill and raced in for a layup just 18 seconds into the game.
UA coach Sean Miller started the same lineup for the third straight game, with Brandon Ashley, Hill, Tarczewski, Johnson and Lyons.