TUCSON, Ariz. – Freshman Brandon Ashley had 20 points and 10 rebounds in his first start, Kevin Parrom hit all five of his 3-pointers for 15 points and No. 10 Arizona ran over Long Beach State 94-72 Monday night.
Arizona (3-0) quickly turned what was supposed to be its toughest challenge of the early season into a rout, racing out to a 22-point lead in the first half.
The Wildcats shot 53 percent while making 9 of 19 from 3-point range and 25 of 35 free throws.
Ashley led the way, hitting all six of his shots from the field and 8 of 9 free throws. Solomon Hill made all 11 of his free throws to add 15 points for Arizona, which gets nine days off before its next game.
James Ennis had 17 points and Peter Pappageorge added 16 for Long Beach State (1-3).
The 49ers made 14 3-pointers in the game, but had 17 turnovers and no chance of stopping Arizona defensively.
The Wildcats outscored Long Beach State by 16 inside and got 16 more points on 13 offensive rebounds. Arizona had a 41-23 rebounding advantage.
Long Beach State's first game against Arizona since 1995 comes in the middle of a difficult stretch in the schedule.
The 49ers opened the season with a win over North Alabama, then lost at Southern California and by 15 to the Tar Heels.
After leaving Tucson, Long Beach State will play road games against No. 6 Syracuse, No. 3 Ohio State and No. 11 UCLA before starting the Big West season on Dec. 29.
It's no surprise; the 49ers play one of the nation's toughest nonconference schedules pretty much every season, a concept coach Dan Monson brought with him from his Gonzaga days.
And they figured to give Arizona its first real test of the season.
With a talented mix of young players and some steady veterans, the Wildcats opened the season with a nine-point win over Charleston Southern and rolled over Texas-El Paso last Thursday.
Arizona survived Charleston Southern's quickness and out-bigged the tall Miners, outrebounding them by 20.
Long Beach State is a combination of the Wildcats' first two opponents, the two-time defending champions in the Big West and the favorite to win it again.
Arizona turned it into a rout right away.
Ashley, who replaced fellow freshman Grant Jerrett in the starting lineup, got it started, scoring the Wildcats' first seven points. The Wildcats built a 39-17 lead.
The 49ers came out firing from 3-point range and certainly didn't stop after falling behind, hitting 7 of 15 in the first half.
But even after Long Beach State went on a 10-0 run, Arizona was in control thanks to its hot shooting.
The Wildcats hit 17 of 27 shots in the first half, including 5 of 9 from 3-point range, and made 11 of 13 free throws. Johnson had 12 points and Ashley 11 to give Arizona a 50-37 halftime lead.
Arizona never let the 49ers get back in it in the second half.
The Wildcats shut down Long Beach State on the perimeter early in the half, Parrom hit a couple of 3-pointers early and Hill scored on a three-point play to put Arizona up 67-48 with just over 14 minutes left.