UCLA Holds On To Beat Temple 54-47

Nov. 18, 2005

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Arron Afflalo scored 18 points and No. 18 UCLA squelched Temple's second-half surge for a 54-47 victory in a second-round Preseason NIT game Thursday night

The Bruins (2-0) advanced to next week's semifinals at New York's Madison Square Garden. They'll play Memphis, an 87-76 winner over Alabama. The Bruins last reached the semifinals in 1992, losing to Seton Hall.

The Owls (1-1) were led by Mardy Collins with 15 points.

Afflalo scored a career-high 23 points in a first-round victory over New Mexico State on Tuesday, when the Bruins had 80 points.

Temple hasn't lost since 1995 when it holds opponents under 50 points, and the Bruins didn't clear that mark until the game's final three minutes. It was their fewest points since a 64-51 loss to California in January.

UCLA's guards, 6-foot-2 Jordan Farmar and 6-foot freshman Darren Collison, handled Temple's bigger trio of the 6-foot-6 Collins, 6-5 Dustin Salisbery and 6-5 Mark Tyndale, who combined for five points in the first half. Collins was coming off an 18-point effort Tuesday against Army.

Tyndale finished with six points and Salisbery went scoreless.

The Owls came out of halftime trailing by 15, and quickly got back into the game with a 19-9 run to start the second. Collins scored nine points as Temple trailed 42-37 with 9:18 remaining.

The Bruins, who solved Temple's zone so well in the first half, struggled against it later on. Tyndale scored on a layin, Dionte Christmas hit a 3-pointer and Collins made two free throws to get within three points with 5:46 remaining.

But that was it for the Owls.

UCLA excited the crowd on a huge dunk by Ryan Hollins, who also made two free throws, keeping the Bruins ahead 51-44. Temple didn't score a field goal in the final 6:53.

Tyndale's jumper tied the game at 14 before the Bruins closed the first half with a 19-4 run to lead 33-18. Afflalo started and ended the spurt with 3-pointers, and scored four points in between.

Both teams shot poorly in the first half, with the Owls hitting 21 percent to UCLA's 38 percent.

Playing UCLA for the first time since 1987, the Owls had one day to travel to the West Coast after beating Army in the first round, John Chaney's 500th victory as Temple coach and 725th overall in his Hall of Fame career.

UCLA center Michael Fey left the game with a left shoulder sprain. He has been bothered by a severe groin strain the last five weeks.

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