No. 3 UCLA Overcomes Second-Half Deficit to Edge Cal, 81-80
March 8, 2008
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Josh Shipp hit a rainbow jumper from behind the backboard with 1.5 seconds remaining to help No. 3 UCLA rally from an 11-point deficit and beat California 81-80 on Saturday.
The Bruins' school-record 28th regular-season victory was in jeopardy until the very end. They trailed by four points with 31 seconds remaining, then freshman Kevin Love hit a 3-pointer off an inbounds pass from Darren Collison to make it 80-79.
Cal's Ryan Anderson was stripped of the ball in the corner. The Bruins eventually got it to Shipp, who was falling out of bounds when he put the ball up one-handed.
The crowd roared as it slipped through the net and began spilling onto the court. But with time still remaining, the referees cleared the floor before Patrick Christopher's jumper was well short as time expired.
Love scored 22 points to lead the Bruins (28-3, 16-2), who go into next week's Pac-10 tournament on a seven-game winning streak.
Anderson scored 21 points for the Golden Bears (15-14, 6-12), who had won at least once against UCLA in each of the last nine seasons. Jamal Boykin added 18 points and Jerome Randle and Christopher had 13 each.
A year ago, the Bruins won the league championship on the road at Washington State, then lost by 10 points at Washington. They opened the Pac-10 tourney with a 76-69 overtime loss to Cal before going on to reach their second straight Final Four.
The next-to-last place Bears dominated most of the 40 minutes, much as No. 7 Stanford did before losing 77-67 in overtime Thursday night, when the Bruins clinched their third consecutive Pac-10 title outright.
The Bears never let up, hitting six straight free throws down the stretch.
The Bruins fell behind by 11 points three times in the second half, with Cal shooting 56 percent from the field for one stretch. Anderson's layup extended Cal's lead to 62-51.
From there, UCLA outscored the Bears 18-10 to close to 72-69 with 4:26 remaining. The Bruins went 9-of-9 from the line in the spurt and Mbah a Moute scored seven points.
Westbrook made one free throw and Mbah a Moute rebounded his miss of the second, but Shipp missed a 3-pointer. Anderson scored over Love for a 74-70 lead before Love was fouled and made both to again put the Bruins within two.
Randle was fouled by Collison, made both and Cal led 76-72. Mbah a Moute cleaned up Love's miss inside to make it 76-74 with 1:27 left.
Christopher kept Cal ahead 78-75 on two free throws before Shipp's layup on UCLA's third attempt of the possession cut it to 78-76 with 34 seconds to go.
Mbah a Moute fouled Randle at midcourt and he made both for an 80-76 lead. That's when Love calmly put up the 3-pointer in front of UCLA's bench with 17 seconds to go.
Two days ago, the Bruins trailed Stanford by 14 points in both halves before dominating the overtime.
Saturday's start was a virtual rerun.
After scoring the game's first basket, the Bruins trailed the rest of the half. The Bears raced to a 21-10 lead before Anderson, their leading scorer, even got his first points. Those came on two free throws at 7:05.
Anderson scored the final five points of the half to keep Cal ahead 37-30 at halftime.