Virginia upsets No. 10 Arizona

Published 12:00 am Monday, November 29, 2004

Sean Singletary was a sophomore in high school the last time Arizona played so poorly.

Singletary, Virginia's highly touted freshman point guard, had 15 points and made several big plays Sunday night in the Cavaliers' 78-60 upset victory over the No. 10 Wildcats.

It was Arizona's lowest point total since Dec. 15, 2001, when Michigan State defeated the Wildcats 74-60 in East Lansing, Mich.

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Arizona, which led Division I in scoring last season, shot just 39.7 percent against Virginia. The Wildcats missed 19 of 24 from beyond the arc and had 21 turnovers.

They'll need to shake it off quick - Lute Olson's team takes on Michigan in the Preseason NIT semifinals Wednesday night in New York.

''You have nightmare games like this, and we've got one nightmare out of the way, I guess,'' Olson said.

Singletary has the Cavaliers (2-0) suddenly dreaming of making noise in the ACC after being picked to finish eighth. He shot 6-for-11 from the field and had eight assists.

- many drawing oohs from the crowd - six steals and five rebounds.

''We just have something to prove,'' Singletary said. ''I know a lot of people are overlooking us. They picked us to be in the bottom of the ACC. We're just going to stay humble about this win.

''We're in the beginning of the season, so it's nothing to be all hyped up about. We're going to stay humble and go to practice and work hard.''

In other Top 25 games, it was: No. 6 Illinois 91, Florida A&M 60; No. 12 Mississippi St. 98, Nicholls St. 69; No. 18 Alabama 85, North Texas 71; and No. 25 Gonzaga 78, Montana 62.

Virginia led 34-22 at halftime and the Wildcats never got any closer than nine in the second half.

Devin Smith led the Cavaliers with 17 points. Channing Frye led Arizona with 17 points, Hassan Adams had 14 and Salim Stoudamire 13, nearly 10 below his average.

No. 6 Illinois 91, Florida A&M 60

At Champaign, Ill., Dee Brown scored 20 points, all in the first half, to lead the Illini.

Brown finished 8-for-8 and had four 3-pointers as the Illini rolled to a 58-29 halftime lead. All five Illini starters scored in double figures to help Illinois improve to 2-0.

No. 12 Mississippi St. 98, Nicholls St. 69

At Starkville, Miss., Lawrence Roberts had the first triple-double in Mississippi State history.

Playing with a mask protecting his broken nose, Roberts finished with 18 points, 12 assists and 11 rebounds for the Bulldogs (4-1), who sealed the win in their home opener with a 20-7 run early in the second half.

No. 18 Alabama 85, North Texas 71

At Tuscaloosa, Ala., Chuck Davis scored a career-high 25 points and the Tide shot 73 percent from the floor in the first half.

Earnest Shelton added 17 points for the Crimson Tide (2-0). Ronald Steele scored 14 points and Kennedy Winston had 13.

No. 25 Gonzaga 78, Montana 62

At Spokane, Wash., Sean Mallon scored 21 points and grabbed seven rebounds, and Gonzaga overcame sloppy shooting to beat Montana.

Gonzaga (2-0) also got 20 points and eight rebounds from Ronny Turiaf. Adam Morrison had 19 points and Derek Raivio added 13 assists.