No. 1 UCLA Posts 78-54 Victory Over Cal State Fullerton

Dec. 6, 2006

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LOS ANGELES (AP) - Arron Afflalo scored 20 points and Josh Shipp added 16 to help No. 1 UCLA pull away from Cal State Fullerton in a 78-54 victory Tuesday night.

The Bruins (7-0) defeated their third consecutive Big West opponent, but this one wasn't as lopsided like the games against Long Beach State and UC Riverside.

Afflalo hit four 3-pointers, Shipp added 16 points, including three long-range baskets, Darren Collison had 15 points and Lorezno Mata had a career-high 16 rebounds for UCLA, which improved to 9-0 against Fullerton, winning every game on the Bruins' home court.

The Bruins are off to their best start under coach Ben Howland in his fourth season.

Bobby Brown scored 18 points and Scott Cutley added 11 points for the Titans (5-2), playing a No. 1 team for the first time since 1991. Back in the late 1980s and early '90s, the Titans played the top-ranked team in UNLV, winning once in six matchups when the Runnin' Rebels were a powerhouse under Jerry Tarkanian.

UCLA stretched a six-point halftime lead into a 13-point bulge with a 9-0 run to start the final 20 minutes. Collison hit a 3-pointer, two free throws and a layin while the Titans got one basket from Justin Burns, who had their first six points of the half.

The Titans got within six again on a 3-pointer by Marcus Crenshaw before UCLA ran off another nine in a row for a 61-47 lead. Shipp scored five straight and Afflalo hit a 3-pointer.

Fullerton guard Frank Robinson fouled out with 3:43 remaining and Cutley picked up his third during UCLA's second 9-0 spurt.

That run effectively finished off Fullerton, which was limited to two field goals over the final 6 minutes. Brown had the Titans' final seven points. They committed 28 turnovers to UCLA's 21.

The Titans clearly weren't intimidated playing underneath the 11 national championship banners hanging in Pauley Pavilion, jumping out to a 14-4 lead to start the game in front of 96-year-old John Wooden.

By then, the Bruins had committed seven of their 14 first-half turnovers against a Fullerton team that likes to play the same run-and-gun style.

The Bruins got back into it on the 3-point shooting of Afflalo and Shipp, who each made a pair that put UCLA in front 24-18.

UCLA held onto a 39-33 lead heading into halftime, but just barely.

Afflalo electrified the crowd by stepping around a defender and hitting a 3-pointer at the buzzer before high-fiving fans on the way into the locker room.

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