Desmond Cambridge Jr. won a 60-foot shot at the Buzzer and Arizona State from a 10-point deficit, finishing second. 7 Arizona 89-88 in a Pac-12 men’s basketball game Saturday..
The Wildcats (24-5, 13-5 Pac-12) built a 10-point lead midway through the second half before going more than six minutes without a field goal as Arizona State pulled ahead by one.
The Suns Devils (20-9, 11-7) went up 86-85 in the Warren Washington construction a minute away, but Pelle Larsson put Arizona back in a 29-second construction.
DJ Horne of Arizona lost a jumper with four seconds left, and the Sun Devils had one last chance after Oumar Ballo hit one of two free players.
When he caught the 2.4-second ball, Cambridge stunned fans at the McKale Center, firing a shot from the outside of half the court that sent his teammates to the floor to celebrate.
“I didn’t think that shot would go in,” said Cambridge, who finished with 19 points. “I just wanted to have a good mass and everyone in the crowd said, “Ohh!” Once she came in, I literally could only scream because I couldn’t understand that.”
Cedric Henderson Jr. Azuolas Tubelis added 17 to help the Sun Devils give a big boost in their attempt to make the NCAA tournament.
“We’re sitting on pocket aces, and that happens sometimes,” said Arizona coach Tommy Lloyd.
At the first team meeting, the state of Arizona gave a big race to open the second half, but Lloyd didn’t call a break, letting his team play through adversity. The Wildcats responded with their own race for a 69-60-year win on a night when none of them took more than 37%.
The new game was all about the trade.
It was his first and only 30 meters of the day, and he won the game for the Sun Devils.
With the victory, Arizona State improved to 20-9 overall and 11-7 in the Pac-12 match. The ASU has won four of the last five, but it still has a lot to do to enter the NCAA tournament.
Fighting a top 10 group on the road is a good start. And two more opportunities. Quad 1 remains before the conference tournament. The ASU will complete its regular season programme with two other road games — UCLA No 4 and USC.
If the Sun Devils continue to win, the selection board may have difficulty excluding them from the field. If this happens, the Cambridge shot will be considered as the moment when the trajectory of the ASU season has changed.
The loss to Arizona in the meantime is likely to cause the team’s chances of winning the regular season’s Pac-12 title. If UCLA wins one of its last three games of the season, the Bruins will win the league.