TUCSON, AZ - FEBRUARY 26:  Justin Cobbs #1 of the California Golden Bears lays up a shot against the Arizona Wildcats during the first half of the college
TUCSON, AZ - FEBRUARY 26: Justin Cobbs #1 of the California Golden Bears lays up a shot against the Arizona Wildcats during the first half of the college basketball game at McKale Center on February 26, 2014 in Tucson, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) ( Christian Petersen )

TUCSON, Ariz. -- Arizona's Rondae Hollis-Jefferson sprinted down the baseline, caught a bounce pass from teammate Nick Johnson and threw in a one-handed dunk.

Cal coach Mike Montgomery quickly popped up from the Bears bench and did what the rest of the 14,545 fans at McKale Center were doing -- clapped and stomped his feet.

If you can't beat them, join them?

Hollis-Jefferson, Aaron Gordon and Johnson all took turns delighting their home crowd with transition dunks, which catapulted No. 3 Arizona to an 87-59 win over the Bears on Wednesday night.

"Our objective was to keep them out of transition, but obviously we didn't do that," Montgomery said. "They're a good basketball team. You have to give credit where credit is due. They banked in a three. Gordon hit free throws. They did things they haven't always done this season."

Cal (18-10, 9-6 Pac-12) took a brief 14-13 lead early in the first half, but Arizona responded with a 26-9 run that included Hollis-Jefferson's dunk and took a 39-23 lead.

After leading 44-29 at half and extending that lead to 20 at the 16:03 mark of the second, Cal answered with a 14-2 run to make it an eight-point game at 55-47. But Arizona outscored Cal 32-12 the rest of the way and cruised to victory.

"We made a run and got back, but we just ran out of gas," Montgomery said.

Montgomery's team struggled to find much space against Arizona's defense. The Bears were just 4 for 16 from 3-point distance and were outrebounded by the Wildcats 42-25. The Bears had 14 turnovers to 10 assists.


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It was a far different scene from earlier this month when Cal upset the then-No. 1 Wildcats 60-58 on a game-winning shot from Justin Cobbs.

"They were a little bit angry having lost to us," Montgomery said. "They're making shots right now. They didn't do that at our place. We played well in spurts. We just got killed on the boards."

Cobbs, who had 19 points and seven assists against the Wildcats in the first matchup, struggled on Wednesday. The senior had 12 points, two assists and four turnovers.

He also was hit with a technical foul in the second half after arguing with a referee. In the same sequence, Cal's bench also was assessed a technical, giving Arizona's Johnson four free throws.

"It was just frustration," Cobbs said. "As a senior, I can't do that. I apologized to my team for that. That just can't happen again."

Arizona (26-2, 13-2) was led by Johnson, who had 22 points, seven rebounds and five assists. Hollis-Jefferson had 12 points and 10 rebounds.

Cal's Jordan Mathews suffered an ankle injury late in the loss. Montgomery said after the game he wasn't sure of the severity, but it didn't appear as bad as it initially looked. Mathews had seven points in 11 minutes. David Kravish had seven points, seven rebounds and four blocks in the loss.

Saturday's game

Cal (18-10, 9-6 Pac-12) at Arizona State (20-8, 9-6), 3 p.m., Pac-12 Networks