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Bruins Hold Off WSU in Overtime

Jan 17, 2021
Camryn Brown (photo by Caren Nicdao)

Charisma Osborne Postgame Interview | Box Score (PDF) | Postgame Highlights | Postgame Press Conference | Boxscore

LOS ANGELES – No. 8 UCLA held on for a 68-66 overtime victory over No. 25 Washington State in Pauley Pavilion presented by Wescom. The win was UCLA's third over a ranked opponent this season and improves the Bruins' record to 8-2 overall and 6-2 in Pac-12 play.
Sophomore guard Charisma Osborne led all players with 28 points, including eight of UCLA's last 10 points of the contest. Michaela Onyenwere added 14 points and 15 rebounds for her fourth double-double of the season and 28th of her career. Natalie Chou also scored in double figures, totaling 15 points. Charlisse Leger-Walker led Washington State with 18 points, and Bella Murekatete contributed a double-double with 14 points and 16 rebounds.
Washington State (7-2, 5-2) sent the game into overtime with a perfectly-executed basket off a missed free throw in the final seconds of regulation. Trailing 53-50 with two seconds remaining in regulation, Charlisse Leger-Walker was fouled. She made her first free throw and deliberately missed the second. Her sister Krystal Leger-Walker was able to grab the rebound and make the layup at the buzzer to force overtime.
Both teams both scored five points to start the overtime period, locking the score at 58 with just over three minutes to play. Charlisse Leger-Walker scored at the 3:05 mark, but Osborne answered with another triple to give UCLA the lead (2:06). Osborne followed with a huge and-one lay-in to make it 64-62 with 46 seconds to play.
UCLA had led throughout most of the game, opening the first quarter on a 7-0 run. The Cougars tied the game at 13 before Osborne responded with a triple from the left elbow to put the Bruins ahead (2:18). Onyenwere added a jumper from and a pair of free throws to extend UCLA's lead to 20-13 at the end of the first quarter.
Three-straight baskets from Emma Nankervis in the second quarter trimmed UCLA's lead to 22-19 at the 5:27 mark. Both teams then stalled offensively four over two minutes of game time. Bessoir hit a pair of free throws to end the drought, putting the Bruins up 24-19 (2:44). Osborne followed two-straight buckets to ignite the UCLA offense and then found Chou for the easy basket to go ahead 30-20 and forcing a timeout from the Washington State bench. UCLA would go on to take a 32-21 lead into the break.
UCLA increased its lead in the third quarter, with an Emily Bessoir three-pointer putting UCLA up 40-24 (6:37). The Bruins would take a 42-26 lead into the third quarter media stoppage. Charlisse Leger-Walker banked in a jumper to cut the deficit to 13, but Chou answered with a bucket in the paint to bring the lead back to 45-30 (2:12). The Cougars would cut the lead to 11 with 0:26 left in the frame, but Osborne finished the quarter with a strong layup to put UCLA ahead 48-35.
After both teams went scoreless for the first couple minutes of the fourth quarter, Cougar center Murekatete opened the scoring with an easy two under the basket (7:42). She added a pair of free throws before Johanna Teder knocked down a jumper, cutting the Bruins' lead to 48-41 at the fourth quarter media stoppage (5:00). Krystal Leger-Walker continued the run for WSU with a triple from the top of the key, and Charlisse Leger-Walker followed with a driving lay-up to cut the Bruins' lead to two with 3:52 to play. Krystal Leger-Walker would tie the game on a turnaround jumper, but Chou finally got UCLA on the board with a free throw at the 1:34 mark. Charlisse Leger-Walker could not be stopped as she scored in the paint once again, but Osborne came up huge and banked in a three to give the Bruins a 52-50 lead with 1:03 to play before the Cougars tied at the buzzer.

UCLA is back in action on Friday, Jan. 22 with a matchup against No. 1 Stanford. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. PT from Kaiser Permanente Arena in Santa Cruz, Calif., where the Cardinal are currently based. The Bruins fell to Stanford, 61-49, in the initial meeting between the teams this season (Dec. 21).