No. 5 UCLA Rolls to Fifth Straight Win
Dec. 29, 2007
Josh Shipp and Luc Richard Mbah a Moute added 10 points apiece and Russell Westbrook had nine points and six assists for the Bruins, who completed the nonconference portion of their schedule with a 12-1 record, going 8-1 at home, 3-0 at neutral sites and 1-0 on the road.
The two-time defending Pac-10 regular-season champions open league play Thursday night at Stanford having won five straight games by an average of 24 points since their only loss, a 63-61 setback to No. 9 Texas on Dec. 2.
The Bruins outrebounded their smaller opponents 31-16, and the outmanned Aggies committed a season-high 21 turnovers in losing for the fourth time in five games. UC Davis has lost 13 straight road games including six this season.
Kyle Brucculeri and Shane Hanson scored 11 points each for UC Davis (5-7).
Lorenzo Mata-Real, UCLA's top reserve and second-leading rebounder, sat out the game due to a strained left groin. Collison played despite a sprained left ankle.
After Hanson's 3-pointer early in the second half trimmed UCLA's lead to 10 points, the Bruins outscored the Aggies 20-3 for a 57-30 lead with 6 minutes remaining. UC Davis had separate scoring droughts of 6 and 7 minutes during the run.
A telling sign came in the first 2 minutes when UCLA got three offensive rebounds, setting up its first two baskets. Thirteen of the Bruins' 16 first-half rebounds came at the offensive end.
UCLA, which never trailed despite shooting 2-for-11 to start the game, took command by scoring 13 straight points for 19-5 lead midway through the first half. The Aggies had committed nine turnovers and attempted only five shots at that stage.
The Bruins led by as many as 15 points before settling for a 37-24 halftime lead. The Aggies were 13 points down at the break despite shooting 10-of-15, including 3-of-6 from 3-point range.
UCLA wound up shooting 33-of-62 while UC Davis was 18-of-37.
The game was the first between the schools. UC Davis is playing its first full season as an NCAA Division I team and as a full-fledged member of the Big West Conference. The Aggies were 5-23 last season, but shocked Stanford 64-58 late in the 2005-06 season, when they went 8-20.