Bucknell 65, Arizona 54
Mike Muscala had 20 points and nine rebounds to lead Bucknell to
a 65-54 win over Arizona on Wednesday night in the opening round of
Joe Willman had 15 points and Bryson Johnson added 14 for
Bucknell (25-9), which dominated from the opening tip.
”Going into tonight’s game I was confident,” said Muscala. ”I
made sure to tell the others to be confident as well. Coach
prepared our team for tonight by making sure he kept our team calm
Bucknell held Arizona in check, leading by as many as 13 in the
first half. The Wildcats briefly took at two-point lead in the
second half, but Bucknell held Arizona to 35 percent shooting for
”The bar is set high and we relish those expectations, we
didn’t want any moral victories,” said Bucknell coach Dave
The Wildcats never appeared fully ready to play, which coach
Sean Miller attributed to coming off a disappointing loss in the
Pac 12 championship game.
”I don’t know if we entered today’s game not really over the
Pac 12 tournament, and if you don’t put that behind you, you will
lose to a really good team, and that’s what happened tonight,”
Solomon Hill led the Wildcats (23-12) with 17 points and nine
rebounds, and senior Jesse Perry added 14 points.
Arizona, which fell to 0-4 all-time in the tournament, hadn’t
made an appearance in the NIT since 1951.
”The NIT should have been an opportunity that we looked forward
to,” said junior Solomon Hill. ”Preparation going into the game
didn’t go as well and smooth as it should have. It happens. There
is good competition out there. We had all the chance, it just
didn’t come down our way.”