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California Baptist Heads to the Desert to Take on Another Pac-12 Foe

Games against teams from the Pac-12 haven’t gone quite the way WAC schools would have liked. California Baptist sure understands that after a heartbreaker in the season opener.

The WAC is currently 0-5 against schools from the Power 6 Conference. There have been heartbreakers and blowouts. Either way you slice it, the Pac-12 has just been a little better.

One of those losses came on opening night when CBU traveled to Los Angeles to take on USC. The Lancers led 79-74 after Ty Rowell hit one of his nine 3-pointers with 1:59 to play. But, USC came back to tie the game and force overtime.

In the overtime period, potential NBA first round draft pick Evan Mobley took over. Mobley scored six points in the overtime period to help the Trojans hold off red-hot CBU, 95-87 at the Galen Center.

California Baptist shot 64 percent from distance and hit 20 3-pointers in the contest. Ty Rowell and Mark Carbone combined for 14 of those 3-pointers. Rowell had a career-high 32 points on 11-21 shooting.

Notes About CBU at Arizona

On Wednesday night at the McKale Center, the Lancers may need a performance similar to their season-opener. Arizona is 5-0 with all five games having been played in Tucson. The Wildcats have four players averaging in double figures led by Jemarl Baker Jr. at 14.2 points per game. Ty Rowell will most likely get the assignment of guarding Baker. At 6-5 Baker has a little more size than Rowell’s 6-2 frame. 

On the offensive end, besides Rowell, Reed Nottage, Tre Armstrong and Gorjok Gak will have to step up. All three players are averaging double figures or the Lancers along with Rowell. And perhaps CBU will turn to Elijah Thomas, Malik Wade, Mark Carbone or even Te’Jon Sawyer to step out and have a monster game in an upset bid.

This is the first meeting between California Baptist and Arizona. The Wildcats are 112-12 in their last 124 home games at the McKale Center. 

Which stat will give? Arizona is holding teams to 59.2 points per game. California Baptist averages 90.6. So, which stat will give on Wednesday night? If the Lancers score 65-plus points, an upset may be on the menu.

Arizona is efficient on the defensive end of the floor. The Wildcats are holding teams to just 36 percent shooting from the floor including 25 percent from 3-point land. Average margin of victory for Arizona is 19.6. This might explain the Lancers being a 22.5-point underdog on Tuesday night. 

The game will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Network with tip slated for 5 p.m. MT. The last time CBU played on the Pac-12 Network, the Lancers nearly knocked off USC. Arizona is coming off a 69-61 win over UTEP on Saturday

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