Women's Basketball Falls to No. 8 Arizona, 74-63
LOS ANGELES – The UCLA women's basketball team saw its four-game win streak snapped on Wednesday evening, as No. 8 Arizona came into Pauley Pavilion Presented by Wescom and came away with a 74-63 victory. With the loss, UCLA drops its first home contest of the season, falling to 9-5 overall and 4-2 in the Pac-12.
UCLA started the game on fire, moving out to a quick 10-0 lead in the first five minutes of action. Early buckets by Natalie Chou, Charisma Osborne and IImar'I Thomas moved the Bruins out to a 7-0 advantage, eventually going to double digits on a three-pointer by Dominique Onu. Although Arizona managed to stop the bleeding on a layup from Gisela Sanchez to cut the lead to 10-2, UCLA would go on to score five more unanswered points after Chou's second three pointer of the quarter followed by another layup from Thomas. The Bruins doubled up the Wildcats to end the quarter, finishing with a 19-8 advantage. Thomas led all scorers with eight points.
The Wildcats (15-2, 5-2 Pac-12) found their form in the second quarter, outscoring UCLA 28-14. Osborne led the Bruins, scoring a team-high 10 points, which included a pair of three-pointers. It was enough to maintain the UCLA lead heading into halftime, with the Bruins taking a slim 36-32 advantage into the intermission.
Less than five minutes into the third quarter, the Wildcats managed to tie the game at 42-42 on a three-pointer by Sam Thomas. Arizona took their first lead of the game shortly thereafter when Cate Reese knocked down a pair of free throws to give her team a 44-42 advantage. The Wildcats went on an 11-0 run in that short stretch. Chantel Horvat's layup with three minutes to play managed to halt the run, although Arizona would finish the quarter up 50-47.
UCLA managed to snag the lead once more in the game, taking a 61-60 advantage following a pair of made free throws from Chou. However, it was all Arizona down the stretch, as the Wildcats held the Bruins scoreless for the final 4:01 of the game, going on a 12-0 run to close out the 74-63 victory.
"Right now it hurts and I wanted it for them and they wanted it," said the Michael Price Family UCLA head coach Cori Close. "We will learn and continue to grow from these experiences. We are showing so much fight and as their leader, I want to see them be rewarded. We will build on these experiences and take it to the next one."
Arizona's Shaina Pellington led all scorers on the night with 20 points. Thomas led UCLA with 14 points on 7-of-14 shooting. She was joined in double figures by teammates Chou (13), Osborne (12) and Horvat (11). The Bruins shot 44-percent from the field compared to just 39-percent for the Wildcats. UCLA also out-shot Arizona from behind the arc, shooting 46-percent on the evening.
Osborne joined the 1,000-point club at UCLA on Wednesday. She entered the evening with 989 points and now stands at 1,001 for her Bruin career.
UCLA next heads to the Pacific Northwest for games against No. 19 Oregon this Friday and Oregon State on Sunday.