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Wildcats Defeat Nebraska In Las Vegas Showdown

LAS VEGAS (AP) - Loren Woods scored nine of his 19 points during a run by Arizona to open the second half Saturday night as the No. 4 Wildcats had little trouble beating Nebraska 80-59.

The first basketball meeting between the two schools in 30 years became a blowout when Arizona went on a 15-2 run to open the second half.

Woods, a 7-foot-1 junior, dominated on the inside during the run, and Arizona's stifling defense held Nebraska scoreless for nearly five minutes to open the second half. The 19 points was the most scored by Woods since transferring from Wake Forest.

Arizona (9-1) led by as many as 25 points midway through the second half, and the Wildcats substituted liberally the rest of the game. Nebraska (4-5) got to within 64-50 with 7:30 left, but Arizona coach Lute Olson reinserted his starters and the Cornhuskers could get no closer.

The game was the first half of the Las Vegas Showdown. In the second game, No. 14 Oklahoma State played UNLV.

Arizona led 42-33 at halftime behind 12 points apiece by Woods and Michael Wright.

Nebraska's only lead came on the first basket of the game by Larry Florence. Arizona quickly ran off eight straight points, however, and, after a 9-0 run a few minutes later, the Cornhuskers never challenged.

Wright led all scorers with 22 points, while Gilbert Arenas added 15. Nebraska was led by Larry Florence with 16 points, while Danny Walker and Kimani Ffriend had 11 apiece.

It was the second win in a row for Arizona over a non-ranked team, after facing three top 10 opponents in a seven day stretch. Arizona's only loss came during that stretch to Connecticut.

Nebraska was playing without senior guard Cookie Belcher, out with an injured wrist.

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