UCLA Deals 61-51 Defeat to UNLV in Bruins' Season Opener in Pauley

Nov. 23, 2003

Los Angeles, Calif. - UCLA opened its season with a 61-51 defeat of UNLV this afternoon in Pauley Pavilion. Sophomore guard Nikki Blue, the leading returning Bruin scorer, led UCLA in the game with 15 points. Blue also handed out six assists and keyed the defense with six steals.

That Bruin defense forced 31 UNLV turnovers for the game and held the Runnin' Rebels to just one basket over the last 9:07 of the contest. The Rebels had taken a 42-41 lead on a layup by Kameca Simmons with 9:07 to play, but the Bruins answered with a 10-2 run to take a 51-44 lead at the 5:13 mark. Three baskets by Blue were included in the Bruin run. UCLA then built the lead up to as many as 10 before InFini Robinson's layup with 1:30 to play sliced the margin to six, 56-50. The Rebels were forced to foul, and Amanda Livingston, Lisa Willis and Blue each hit a free throws down the stretch to secure the win for the Bruins.

Willis, a sophomore guard/forward, added 13 points for UCLA. Freshman Noelle Quinn scored 11 points and led the Bruin team with eight rebounds in her first collegiate contest. Livingston came off the bench to score seven points. Simmons led UNLV, which fell to 1-1 on the season, with 13 points.

UCLA will play next at No. 2 Texas on Tuesday evening at 7:00 Central Time. The Bruins return home to host Illinois on Sunday, November 30, at 1 p.m. in Pauley Pavilion, in a game that will be televised nationally on Fox Sports Net.

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