February 4, 2011 | 8:09am
There were momentous happenings in men's Pac-10 basketball as the conference's second half got under way last night with the Arizona teams on the road in the Bay Area.
For starters, the Arizona Wildcats took over sole possession of first place by virtue of a tough win over the Stanford Cardinal up in Palo Alto.
Combined with Oregon State's upset victory over Washington, UA now leads the Huskies and UCLA Bruins by one game in a league where any team is eminently capable of beating any other.
It may not be a "power" conference this year like the ACC or the Big East, but the Pac-10 is evenly matched and, thus, very entertaining.
That said, the ASU Sun Devils would give just about anything for one lonely win. Once again, the Devils were in a game -- this one against Cal -- until the last few seconds before finally falling 66-62 to the Golden Bears.
The loss dropped the lowly locals to 1-9 in the conference, good for last place.
Scoring just three points in the final 7:26 of the contest, which is what ASU did, usually won't do the trick, and a three-pointer by freshman Allen Crabbe with seconds left gave Cal its four-point final cushion.
Losing, as is winning, is contagious, though the Devils don't exhibit any lack of desire to turn around what has become an increasingly miserable season.
The two Arizona schools switch locations tomorrow, as ASU takes on Stanford and Arizona plays at Cal. Both games will be televised back-to-back on Channel 34 (FSAZ), starting at 4 p.m. Arizona time.