If fans can—just for a moment—forget what happened at Arizona Stadium on Saturday, there were some positive moments for the Arizona Wildcats last week.
Let’s get to it in this week’s version of the Wildcat Wrap.
- The UA seniors weren’t going to let California ruin senior night. Nope. A back-and-fourth match between the ‘Cats and Golden Bears came down to the fifth set, with UA pulling away to win the set 15-10, the match 3-2. Kendra Dahlke ended her final game at McKale Center with 19 kills. Along with Dahlke, Mackenzie Hernandez and Victoria Svorinic played on the fabled McKale court one last time.
- The win against Cal ensured the ‘Cats would finish .500 in conference, and it gave the team win No. 21. It’s only the second time in over a decade UA volleyball has won over 20 matches.
- UA then capped the regular season with a sweep of Arizona State on Saturday to finish the regular season 22-10 overall and 11-9 in the Pac-12.
- On Selection Sunday, the ‘Cats learned they’ll play Missouri on Friday in Lincoln, Nebraska in the first round of the NCAA tournament. Missouri finished fourth in the SEC with a 23-7 record. The winner of Arizona/Missouri will play the winner of seventh-seeded Nebraska and Hofstra on Sunday. Nebraska won the national championship last season.
- Rob Refsnyder signed a minor league contract with the Diamondbacks. The contract comes with an invite to the D-Back’s spring training camp. The 2012 national champion has played on three MLB teams since being drafted by the New York Yankees in 2015. Refsnyder played in 40 games with the Tampa Bay Rays last season, hitting .167.
- Name a better duo than freshman Cate Reese and redshirt sophomore Aari McDonald. I’ll wait. Reese had her second career double-double with 19 points and a career-high 16 rebounds, as UA (4-1) got a convincing 73-32 win over South Carolina State on Friday night. McDonald, who entered as the nation’s leading scorer at 29.5 points per game, put up 15 points in the win. The 32 points allowed by UA is the lowest an opponent has scored in program history.
- At halftime, Ify Ibekwe was inducted into the Arizona Ring of Honor. Ibekwe, who played at UA from 2007-2011, is the all-time leader in rebounds (1,194) and double-doubles (55). She was named the 2011 Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year.
- The ‘Cats host Incarnate Word on Tuesday. Incarnate Word is a private college in San Antonio. The team travels to San Diego for a game against San Diego State University on Sunday.
- McDonald’s play is inspired by her late grandfather who passed away last March. Our story on that can be read here.
- The GymCats are back for another season. On Sunday, the squad will host its annual GymCat Showcase at McKale Center. The first official event of the season is on Jan. 6 on the road against Central Michigan. The first home event is Jan. 12 against Arkansas.
- Maybe Coach Sean Miller and his teams just don’t enjoy playing ball on an island. The Wildcats went 1-2 in the Maui Invitational, beating Iowa State in their opener before falling to two top-10 teams in Gonzaga and Auburn. Check out our basketball section for all our coverage from that.
- UA returns to action Thursday when it hosts Georgia Southern, before heading across the country to Connecticut to face the Huskies on Sunday.
- Four-star forward Zeke Nnaji committed to UA on Friday. He is ranked as the No. 35 player in the 2019 class and the No. 8 ranked power forward. His commitment makes Arizona’s class the No. 1 class in the country.
- The Territorial Cup happened Saturday and it did not end well for Arizona. Head to our football section for all of our coverage if you missed it or if you want to-relive it for whatever reason.
- But, hey, Arizona did get a lot of good news on the recruiting trail. Three-star defensive end Sylvain Yondjouen committed to the ‘Cats. Hailing from Brussels, Belgium, Yondjouen is labeled as a player that’s raw, but has the tools to become a special player.
- Two other commits pledged to the program Sunday in Trevon Mason and Josh Donovan. Mason is a 300-pound defensive tackle, who is finishing up his JUCO career at Navarro College. Donovan is an offensive lineman weighing in at 330 pounds. Both are from Texas.
- UA’s 2019 class now sits at 17 commitments and ranks 55th in the country and ninth in the Pac-12.