The Arizona Wildcats went 2-1 last week. A home win over a Top 20 team was enough to overcome a road loss to a Top 5 team. When all was said and done, UA had moved up one spot in the Associated Press Top 25 to No. 14.
POLL ALERT: No. 24 Illinois cracks women's AP Top 25 for first time since 2000; No. 5 LSU has best ranking since 2009; South Carolina, Stanford remain 1-2.— AP Top 25 (@AP_Top25) January 9, 2023
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Arizona (14-2, 4-1 Pac-12) started the week with a 16-point loss to No. 2 Stanford in Maples Pavilion. While three of the four quarters were close, that doesn’t tell the whole story. Arizona head coach Adia Barnes said that the Cardinal “manhandled” the Wildcats,
Just four days later, a shorthanded Arizona fought off an upset bid by Oregon State to take a 72-69 victory in McKale Center. The Wildcats had to come back from two different 12-point deficits to get back on the winning track.
Then came the big win in front of a national TV audience. On Sunday, then-No. 15 Arizona went back and forth with then-No. 18 Oregon in an impressive offensive display by both teams. The Ducks led by as many as eight points in the first half, but they weren’t able to put the Wildcats away. They resorted to fouling instead of defending in a one-possession game, hoping Arizona would miss its free throws. Instead, the Wildcats stepped to the line and put the game away.
The Wildcats remain one of five Pac-12 teams in the poll. Stanford is still at No. 2. They are joined in the Top 10 by UCLA (8) and Utah (10). Arizona comes in next at 14, and the Ducks round out the group at No. 21. The loss to the Wildcats cost Oregon three spots in the poll.