Bruins Beat Ducks In Pac-10 Opener

Dec. 27, 2002

EUGENE, Ore. - UCLA's full-court press and hot hand on the offensive endhelped down the University of Oregon women's basketball team, 93-68, before4,700 at McArthur Court in both teams' Pac-10 opener Friday.

UCLA freshman guard Nikki Blue scored a game-high 26 points - 20 in the secondhalf - while Whitney Jones tied her career-high with 24 on the night. The Bruins improved to 6-4 and 1-0 in the Pac-10, whilethe Ducks dropped to 4-6, 0-1.

Oregon had trouble with UCLA's full-court press, especially in the first half,where the Ducks committed 11 of their 19 turnovers. The Bruins raced out to a27-7 lead in the first 10 minutes, as the Ducks could get no closer to 13 downthe rest of the way.

'I felt if we could have taken care of the ball, it would have been a muchcloser game,' second-year Oregon coach Bev Smith said. 'We battled with themand I'm pleased with our play in the second half.'

The Ducks were without their star forward, Cathrine Kraayeveld, whose rightknee suffered severe inflammation Thursday night before practice. Tests on thesore knee are being evaluated and her return is unknown. Kraayeveld leads theteam with averages of 16.7 points and 11.7 rebounds.

'We were really hurt by not having Cathrine,' said Oregon sophomore guardBrandi Davis, who had nine points and three assists. 'We pushed and went hardand unfortunately did not get a win. I'm pretty confident in our team withouthaving Cathrine. We're not going to stop ... we are going to jump everyhurdle.'

Oregon's 25-point deficit was its second-worst defeat at home to a Pac-10team. It also marked its worst loss since UCLA beat the Ducks by 28 in 1998,which also was the last season the Bruins won at Mac Court.

'We need to play like we did tonight (in terms of effort), but we need to bemore prepared making sure everyone is doing their job,' Smith said.

UCLA shot 63 percent in the first half to take a 49-28 lead. The Ducks alsolost the rebounding battle for the seventh time this year, 37-29. Oregon is1-6 this year when being outrebounded.

Freshman post player Carolyn Ganes kept Oregon alive on the offensive end with20 points on 6-of-13 shooting from the field and 7-of-7 from the foul line. Itwas her second 20-point game of her young career. Andrea Bills added 16points, hitting 7-of-10 from the floor, and grabbed a team-high nine rebounds.Sophomore guard Amy Taylor was Oregon's only other double-digit scorer, addinga career-high 10 off the bench.

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