UCLA Falls to No. 20 Ohio State, 77-70
CLEVELAND – Cody Riley scored a team-leading 15 points and grabbed five rebounds as the UCLA men's basketball team lost to No. 20 Ohio State, 77-70, in a non-conference showdown at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse on Saturday evening.
Johnny Juzang finished with 13 points and Jalen Hill had 10 points, rounding out the Bruins' list of double-figure scorers. All nine UCLA players who saw action scored in the game.
Ohio State's Duane Washington Jr. scored a team-leading 14 points, while Zed Key finished with 11 and CJ Walker tallied 10.
The Buckeyes (6-1) shot 50 percent overall, connecting on 25 of 50 shots. UCLA shot 40 percent in the CBS Sports Classic contest.
"I will say this, I thought it was a hell of a battle," said Mick Cronin, The Michael Price Family UCLA Men's Head Basketball Coach. "I thought that we played well for a long period of time … I thought toughness and playing smart and all the things that coaches talk about decided this game. I thought it was a great game for a lot of reasons. But we've got to be the tougher team."
The back-and-forth contest featured eight lead changes and eight ties. Ohio State led UCLA (5-2) at halftime by a 39-38 margin. The Bruins led by as many as six points midway through the second half (51-45 at the 14:00 mark).
UCLA used a 7-0 scoring run to lead 49-44 with 15 minutes to play and extended the cushion to 51-45 on a jump shot by Chris Smith. The Bruins led the contest until Eugene Brown III's first of two back-to-back 3-point baskets. His 3-pointer with 5:34 to play snapped a 63-63 deadlock.
Leading by one point (66-65) with just under five minutes to play, Ohio State closed the game with an 11-5 scoring run to win by seven points.
Hill had an offensive rebound and dunk with 4:17 to play, reducing Ohio State's margin to 69-67. From that point in the contest, UCLA was unable to tie the game or take the lead.
Ohio State opened the game with a 10-4 scoring run before UCLA tied the contest, 10-10, with six consecutive points. UCLA secured its first lead of the game at the 7:15 mark in the first half – at 26-25 – on a layup by Riley. The Bruins pushed their margin to three points – 38-35 – with 1:46 to play in the half after a pair of free throws by Smith.
UCLA returns to action with a Pac-12 matchup at Oregon on Wednesday, Dec. 23. The game will be televised live on ESPN2 at 12:00 p.m. (PT).