No. 5 UCLA Hands No. 4 WSU First Loss of the Season
Jan. 12, 2008
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Washington State is good, just not on UCLA's court.
The fifth-ranked Bruins knocked the No. 4 Cougars from the unbeaten ranks Saturday with an 81-74 victory led by freshman Kevin Love's eighth double-double of the season.
Love had a career-high 27 points and grabbed 14 rebounds, while Darren Collison added 18 points and the Bruins (16-1, 4-0 Pac-10) won their ninth in a row and seventh straight over the Cougars.
Derrick Low scored 24 points after getting nothing in the first half for Washington State, which saw its best start in 91 years ended.
The Cougars (14-1, 2-1) still have just one victory in 51 games at UCLA. They had lost the previous three meetings in Westwood by a combined eight points.
They made it close at the end with nine 3-pointers - five by Low - over the final 5:48.
The Cougars fouled after each and the Bruins held them off on the free throw line, where they were 17-of-21.
UCLA boosted its lead to 42-34 early in the second half on a wide-open 3-pointer by Love. He leaped and bumped bodies with Russell Westbrook in celebration going into a timeout.
The Cougars cut a 17-point deficit to 10 with 9:18 remaining, but Love ended that run. He scored inside, then grabbed the ball on the defensive end and sent a bounce pass to Josh Shipp, who was out in front. Shipp picked up the ball and sailed in for a one-handed dunk that got the crowd on its feet. Shipp finished with 14 points and Westbrook added 12.
Love canned two 3-pointers in the second half when he wasn't ripping down rebounds, scoring down low or setting screens on the perimeter.
Low hit consecutive 3-pointers that drew the Cougars to 57-49 with 5:14 remaining.
The Bruins answered again. Collison drove around Daven Harmeling and scored before falling into the basket support. He got up and made both free throws for a 61-49 lead.
UCLA dominated from the opening tip, running up a 26-8 lead, including eight in a row, before the shaky Cougars knew what hit them. Love had eight points, Shipp hit two 3-pointers and Westbrook scored six points and made some pinpoint passes in the spurt.
Both teams played man-to-man, but the Bruins were quicker and doubled in the post against Aussie big men Aron Baynes and Harmeling.
Love singlehandedly outrebounded the Cougars in the first half, grabbing eight to their seven.
Washington State starter Robbie Cowgill was scoreless in the half and finished with two.
The Cougars were 0-of-7 and had five turnovers before Taylor Rochestie scored their first field goal at 11:24, leaving them trailing 16-6. Baynes went 4-of-6 from the line for their early points.
Washington State settled down after UCLA's opening run, outscoring the Bruins 14-9 to end the half trailing 35-22. Rochestie gave the Cougars a lift going into the locker room with a 3-pointer that barely beat the halftime buzzer. He added 13 points.
Former UCLA stars Reggie Miller and Sidney Wicks attended the game, but 97-year-old former coach John Wooden had a scheduled appearance that kept him away.