TEMPE, Ariz. (AP)Alonzo Verge Jr. scored on a layup with 10.9 seconds left and Remy Martin led Arizona State’s comeback from a 22-point deficit, lifting the Sun Devils to a 66-65 victory over No. 22 Arizona on Saturday night.
The Wildcats (13-6, 3-3 Pac-12) shook off a shaky start with a massive run, building the 22-point lead midway through the first half.
The Sun Devils (12-7, 2-3) stormed back with a 16-0 run spanning halftime, putting a charge into an already-lit-up home crowd.
The rivals traded blows the rest of the way until Verge scored on a contested layup to put the Sun Devils up one. Arizona got a final look, but Josh Green was bumped and couldn’t get a shot to the rim.
Martin finished with 24 points, Rob Edwards 15 and Verge added 13 – none bigger than his final two.
Zeke Nnaji had 21 points and 10 rebounds, and Nico Mannion added 16 points for the Wildcats.
Arizona won the first meeting in a 28-point blowout. Utilizing their size inside, the Wildcats pushed around the smaller Sun Devils, scoring more points in the paint (50) than Arizona State had total (47).
The rematch shot off the line like a drag race, both teams playing at a breakneck pace.
The speed-up caused the turnovers to pile up; seven combined in the first 4 1/2 minutes. The shooting wasn’t great, either, the rivals combining to miss 14 of their first 21 shots.
Arizona settled down after that, Arizona State became frazzled.
The Wildcats kicked their free-flowing offense and transition game into another gear, going on a 22-1 run to go up 34-13. Nnaji had eight points and Mannion a pair of 3-pointers during the run.
Arizona State went 6 1/2 minutes without a field goal, but, with a couple of short runs, cut Arizona’s lead to 43-30 at halftime.
The Sun Devils scored the first seven points of the second half – completing a 16-0 run – to pull within three.
What surely seemed headed toward another rout suddenly turned into a game.
Arizona went flat after building its big league, allowing the Sun Devils get to back in the game and a split in the season series.
Arizona State bounced back from its letdown in Tucson, rallying from a huge deficit and making the biggest plays down the stretch.
Arizona: At Washington State on Thursday night.
Arizona State: At Washington on Wednesday night.
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