UCLA Wins Third Straight, Defeats Washington 65-60

Jan. 11, 2004

Los Angeles, Calif. - UCLA posted its third straight win with a 65-60 defeat of Washington in a Pac-10 conference game played in Pauley Pavilion on Nell and John Wooden Court. The victory improved UCLA's record to 8-6 overall and 3-2 in the conference, good for a tie for fourth place. Lisa Willis led three Bruins in double figure points with a game-high total of 19.

After Washington grabbed the early lead, the Bruins came back to take a 9-5 lead with 15:52 remaining in the first half and never trailed again in the contest, but had to hold off a furious comeback attempt. UCLA went to the locker room up by a 36-23 margin at halftime after forcing 12 first half Washington turnovers and coming up with nine steals. The Bruins then built the lead up to as many as 16 points mid way into the second half, at 55-39 with 9:11 to play.

Washington then began its comeback and outscored the Bruins 12-2 to slice the advantage to just six with 4:52 to play. Three free throws by UCLA freshman Noelle Quinn gave the Bruins a nine-point edge before the Huskies mounted another rally. This time the Huskies closed to within four points, at 62-58, on a pair of free throws by Andrea Lalum with 1:54 to play. After a missed shot by Nikki Blue and a Washington turnover, the Bruins ran the clock down, but Whitney Jones misfired on a shot attempt and the Huskies got the rebound. Washington's Jill Bell came down with an offensive rebound on UW's next possession and was fouled with 33 seconds remaining. Bell made both free throw attempts and cut UCLA's lead to just two points.

The Bruins inbounded the ball and played keep away as the clock wound down before Washington fouled Willis with seven seconds to play. Willis, who scored in double figures for the ninth time this season, sank both attempts in the double bonus situation to give UCLA a 64-60 lead. Washington lost the ball on its next possession and fouled Jones with two seconds remaining on the clock. The Bruin senior sank the first of two free throws in the bonus situation that upped the Bruin margin to five, at 65-60. Washington grabbed the rebound of the second miss, but was unable to get off a shot.

Washington saw its record drop to 8-7, 1-5 with the loss today. Lalum led the Huskies with 18 points. Quinn scored 17 points for UCLA, her fifth straight game in double figures, and Blue added 11. The Bruins will travel to play at the Arizona schools this Thursday (Arizona State) and Saturday (Arizona).

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