Seen & Heard at McKale Center

2013-03-10T00:00:00Z Seen & Heard at McKale CenterPatrick Finley Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
March 10, 2013 12:00 am  • 

Senior day

The Wildcats honored their five seniors - Solomon Hill, Kevin Parrom, Mark Lyons, Max Wiepking and Quinton Crawford - in a quick but emotional postgame ceremony.

Players received framed jerseys, while the team managers got plaques.

Though Lyons fouled out to end his UA home career, Miller removed Hill and Parrom from the game, bear-hugging each as the crowd roared.

Parrom said leaving the game was emotional.

"I was thinking about my mother and my grandmother, everything I've been through," he said. "It was a good moment for me. It's one of those moments I won't ever forget."

Hill said that "playing a game like this against ASU on senior night was great," especially because the lead allowed the Wildcats to insert their two senior walk-ons into the game.

Defending the Pac-12

After a strange Saturday that saw Oregon miss a chance to share the conference title by losing at Utah, and saw Colorado lose one of the more surprising games of the year, at home to Oregon State, Miller defended the Pac-12.

He compared the league to the Big Ten, which he called "the best conference in the country" this year.

"If you look at their top six teams, it looks really similar to the Pac-12," Miller said.

He said he figured five Pac-12 teams would make the tournament.

Guarantee?

On Thursday, Parrom said the Wildcats would beat the Sun Devils.

It wasn't a Joe Namath moment, but it was a promise nonetheless. The Wildcats came through Saturday.

"Solomon, Mark and I couldn't go out with a loss," Parrom said Saturday. "Nobody wants to lose this game, especially on senior night.

"We played hard, and it started at practice. We worked for it."

Quotable

"It feels good beating ASU, every time we beat 'em."

- Parrom

Ooh Aah

Joe Cavaleri was honored at halftime, his last official home game as the Ooh Aah Man before retiring.

Cavaleri met UA president Ann Weaver Hart, athletic director Greg Byrne and deputy athletic director Kathleen "Rocky" LaRose at midcourt during halftime.

They watched a video that aired on the video screen, documenting the super fan's career, which started at a UA baseball game in 1979.

Cavaleri and LaRose teared up during the video.

Afterward, the Wildcats presented him with a framed photo and a giant cardboard head that Zona Zoo made of him. Hart gave him a bag full of UA apparel, and the Wildcats handed him a personalized baseball jersey.

He led his final cheer at McKale Center during a tiemout in the second half.

Not to be forgotten: The UA band, cheerleaders and mascot crews honored their seniors throughout the game.

The big number

4 Times ASU had fouled out all season, before Saturday. Three Sun Devils fouled out against the Wildcats.

Sign of the day

"We Solomon-ly swear: ASU sucks."

- A ZonaZoo sign, managing to honor a senior and take a shot at the Wildcats' rival at the same time

Tweet of the Day

"God didn't want me to be in McKale for the senior night. #noregrets."

- Kyryl Natyazhko (@kreal4real), who left the UA one year early and now plays professionally in Ukraine

Pac-12 tourney or bust?

The Sun Devils must win four Pac-12 tournament games in four days to make the NCAA tournament. Otherwise, the team figures to land in the NIT.

"Anything's possible," guard Jahii Carson said. "Hopefully we can get something going, get another energy."

ASU coach Herb Sendek agreed that ASU likely needed to run the table next week in Las Vegas.

"Obviously, we're on the outside looking in," he said.

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