TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) Kylan Boswell has been inconsistent in Pac-12 play, leading to an occasional earful from coach Tommy Lloyd and some grumbling from Arizona's sizable fan base.

Nobody had a problem with the way he played Wednesday night.

Boswell scored 17 points, Oumar Ballo added 14 points and 13 rebounds and No. 6 Arizona pulled away late to beat Arizona State 85-67.

“Kylan is a really good player,” Lloyd said. “I know he's been under the microscope a little and that's what happens when you're the point guard at Arizona. But I thought he played exceptional. To have 17 points in an atmosphere like this for an 18-year-old is pretty awesome.”

Arizona (22-6, 13-4 Pac-12) swept the regular-season series from its in-state rival. This game was a much more competitive contest - the Wildcats won 105-60 at home over the Sun Devils on Feb. 17.

Boswell shot 7 of 9 from the field, including 3 of 4 from 3-point range. The 17 points were the most he's scored since he had 18 in a season-opening win against Morgan State.

“I felt like I was a little more aggressive than usual,” Boswell said. “Shots came my way and when I was open, I took them. Didn't force anything tonight.”

Arizona's Caleb Love added 16 points, making four 3-pointers. The Wildcats shot 54% from the field and all five starters scored in double figures.

Arizona State (14-15, 8-10) shot just 29% from the field in the first half and couldn't quite recover.

The Sun Devils trailed by 14 points at halftime but quickly cut the margin to 52-47 with 12:01 left. The game stayed tight until the final minutes, when Arizona hit six of seven shots over a five-minute span to pull away.

“To be honest, Arizona is better than we are right now,” Arizona State coach Bobby Hurley said. “We cut it to six a couple times. but we could just never put enough game pressure on them or take the lead. We got close, but we couldn't get over the hump.”

Adam Miller led Arizona State with 16 points. Frankie Collins added 15 but shot just 4 of 18 from the field.

The Wildcats were in command the entire first half and never trailed, jumping out to an early 13-3 lead in the first five minutes after hitting three 3-pointers. Arizona would extend its advantage to 28-12 by midway through the half and settle for a 41-27 lead into the halftime break.


Arizona: The Wildcats looked a little wobbly one month ago, but now they've won eight of nine and are leading the Pac-12 race. It wasn't the prettiest performance, but any win over an in-state rival - particularly on the road - is a good one.

Arizona State: The Sun Devils have plenty of athleticism and play hard, but struggled once again with shooting. They could be a tricky opponent during the Pac-12 tournament with their high-energy approach, but they'll need to shoot better than they did on Wednesday.


Arizona: Host Oregon on Saturday.

Arizona State: At Southern California on March 7.


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