Bruins Defeat Sun Devils, 63-59
March 4, 2010
Los Angeles, Calif. - No. 25 UCLA (21-7, 14-3) defeated Arizona State (17-11, 9-8), 63-59, in a Pac-10 conference women's basketball game played in Pauley Pavilion on Thursday night. The Bruins have now won seven straight and 11 of their last 12 games.
UCLA jumped out to a 14-1 lead while holding the Sun Devils without a field goal for the first nine and a half minutes of the game. ASU, which had missed its first 11 shots in the contest, then rebounded to make five of its next six attempts from the field in a 12-2 run which sliced UCLA's lead to three at 16-13 at the 8:14 mark. The Sun Devils narrowed the gap to one on three occasions before taking their first lead, 23-22, on a pair of free throws by Kali Bennett with 1:52 to play in the half. UCLA tied it up when Erica Tukiainen connected on the front end of a one-and-one free throw opportunity with 1:12 remaining. Neither team scored the rest of the half.
UCLA opened the second half on a 15-3 run, seven of the points coming on shots by Jasmine Dixon, to take a 38-26 lead with 15:51 to play. ASU misfired on six of its first seven shots in the second half but, similar to the first half, came back to trim the lead to just two, 48-46, with six minutes to play. UCLA went on an 8-1 run to move back up by nine, 56-47, with 2:38 to play.
The Bruins then had to withstand one last ASU run in the final seconds. After a Dixon free throw put UCLA up 60-54 with 30 seconds to play, ASU's Becca Tobin followed up a missed Sun Devil shot and was fouled with 18 seconds remaining. Tobin's free throw cut the Bruin lead to 60-57.
ASU then fouled Rebekah Gardner after the inbounds pass and the Bruin sophomore made one-of-two from the free throw line in the double bonus situation to push the advantage up to four points. ASU answered with a basket with seven seconds to play to make it a two-point game, 61-59. The Bruins then threw the inbounds pass out of bounds, and the ball turned over to ASU with 6.8 seconds on the clock. UCLA's Markel Walker knocked the ball away and off of a Sun Devil player with 1.3 seconds to play. ASU fouled Tukiainen with 0.9 seconds left, and the Bruin senior converted both ends of the double bonus for the final four-point cushion.
Dixon led four Bruins in double-figure scoring with 14 points. Also in double-figures were Darxia Morris with 12 and Tukiainen and Doreena Campbell with 10 apiece. Danielle Orsillo led the Sun Devils with 14 points.
UCLA outshot Arizona State, 51%-34.5%, and won the battle of the boards, 35-33.
The win completed a sweep of Arizona State for the first time since the 2002-03 season. The 14 Pac-10 wins matches the total for the second-most (14 in 1997-98) in UCLA history. The Bruins won 15 games when it captured a share of the conference title in 1998-99.
UCLA returns to action on Saturday afternoon to host the University of Arizona at 12:30 p.m. in Pauley Pavilion. It will mark the last home contest for Bruin seniors Allison Taka, Erica Tukiainen and Moniquee Alexander, who will be recognized in a pre-game ceremony.