Men's Hoops Tops No. 3 UCLA in Triple Overtime, 87-84
The Arizona State men's basketball team (7-13, 3-7) upset the No. 3 ranked UCLA Bruins (16-4, 8-3), 87-84, in a triple overtime contest in a front of a crowd of more than 9,000 at Desert Financial Arena on Saturday night.
The Sun Devils found themselves in a back and forth battle in the first half as both teams were getting up and down the court. UCLA appeared to start taking over when they pushed the lead to 28-21 but the Sun Devils responded by going on a 7-0 run to tie the game up at 28, forcing the Bruins to call a timeout.
ASU WINS OVER ASSOCIATED PRESS TOP THREE TEAMS
ASU 87, #3 UCLA 84, 3 OT (Feb. 5, 2022)
#18 ASU 80, #1 Kansas 76 (Dec. 22, 2018)
#16 ASU 95, at #2 Kansas 85 (Dec. 10, 2017)
ASU 69, #2 Arizona 66 (2 OT) (Feb. 14, 2014)
#5 ASU 87, #1 Oregon State 67 (Mar. 7, 1981)
ASU 95, #3 USC 78 (Dec. 1, 1971)
ASU 68, @#2 USC (Dec.12, 1970)
ASU 89, #3 Michigan 87 (Dec. 27, 1965 at Portland/Far West Classic)
After the timeout, freshman Enoch Boakye swatted away a UCLA shot, igniting the crowd and turning up the Sun Devils defensive intensity. Arizona State used the momentum to end the half with a pair of threes from DJ Horne and Jay Heath, taking a 34-32 lead into the locker room at halftime, the first time ASU had left the half since the December Grand Canyon game.
Marreon Jackson, who had his best game as a Sun Devil, scored 11 of his team-high 24 points on 4-7 shooting from the field (3-5 from three) in the first half. He was the only Sun Devil in double figures before halftime.
The Sun Devils came out strong in the second half, quickly going on an 8-0 run and stretching their lead to 42-32, forcing UCLA to call a timeout. After giving up a bucket, Alonzo Gaffney hit his second three pointer of the game, giving Arizona State the largest lead of the night, 45-34.
However, the No. 3 ranked Bruins would not go away quietly. UCLA clawed their way back into the game one possession at a time and eventually took a 58-56 lead on a Johnny Juzang layup with 2:43 remaining in the game. The Sun Devils were able to keep themselves alive by hitting six straight free throws and only allowing UCLA to score four more points before the regulation buzzer sounded. Marreon Jackson had a chance at a game-winning three in the final seconds but came up short. At the end of regulation, the score was tied at 62. Both teams shot .333 from the field and .200 from three in the second half.
Two of the three overtime periods were relatively low-scoring. In the first overtime, each team scored 8 points. After each team scored a couple baskets, DJ Horne hit two free throws to make the score 69-67 but Johnny Juzang converted an and-one on the other end to put the Bruins up by one. Marreon Jackson quickly got the ball and was fouled at the other end, splitting the free throws to keep the game tied at 70. The Bruins gained possession with 1.4 seconds left and had the chance to draw up a play to score but they threw the ball out of bounds, giving the Sun Devils a chance with the same amount of time on the clock. Coach Bobby Hurley drew up a play for DJ Horne to shoot a corner three but it hit the front rim as time expired.
Overtime number two saw both teams score only four points. The Sun Devils had the chance to take the lead after Jalen Graham was fouled while hammering home a powerful dunk but he missed the free throw. Neither team was able to score in the final 2:10 of the second overtime period. UCLA's Jaime Jaquez Jr. had a good look at the basket but was unable to convert it, keeping the score knotted at 74.
The Sun Devils were able to outscore the Bruins 13-10 in the final overtime period. DJ Horne and Jay Heath opened up the final period with a three pointer each and Jalen Graham was able to score back-to-back buckets to give the Sun Devils a comfortable 84-78 lead. UCLA would score three more times but the Sun Devils handled business at the free throw line, icing the game with free throws from Kimani Lawrence and Marreon Jackson.
Arizona State went 18-of-26 (.692) from the free throw line, including 8-of-13 (.615) in the overtime periods.
Marreon Jackson led the Sun Devils with 24 points, his best game this season. Jalen Graham notched a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds. It was an all-around effort as four other Sun Devils ended up in double figures. DJ Horne had 11 points and eight rebounds. Kimani Lawrence had 11 points and nine rebounds. Jay Heath chipped in with 12 points and Alonzo Gaffney had 10 points despite fouling out in the final overtime period. Arizona State's bench outscored UCLA's 27-to-8.
With Saturday night's win, the Sun Devils snapped their four-game losing streak and get a much needed win during a stretch of five games where they are facing ranked opponents. That stretch concludes on Monday when the Sun Devils host No. 7 Arizona at 7 p.m. on FS1.
SUN DEVILS BEEN GOOD IN THE UCLA SERIES LATELY
ASU is now 5-3 vs. UCLA in the past eight meetings. Prior to the Sun Devil 87-84 triple overtime win, the past three games UCLA has won by one point, six points in overtime and three points. The past two games at Pauley Pavilion have been decided in the final second.
SUN DEVILS VS. UCLA PAST EIGHT GAMES
ASU 87, #3 UCLA 84 3 OT/Feb. 5, 2022
@UCLA 80, ASU 79/Feb. 20, 2021
UCLA 81, ASU 75 OT/Jan. 7, 2021
@UCLA 75, ASU 72/Feb. 27, 2020
ASU 84, UCLA 66/Feb. 6, 2020
ASU 83, UCLA 72/Mar. 14, 2019 (Pac-12 Tournament)
ASU 84, @UCLA 73/Jan. 24, 2019
ASU 88, UCLA 79/ Feb. 10, 2018
ASU HEAD COACH BOBBY HURLEY
"I thought it was a really fun and entertaining game to coach, I was willing to do this until tomorrow if the game kept going, it seemed that both teams had an incredible spirit and will to win. A lot of plays were made out there and we were fortunate to have something left in the tank in the third overtime and make some big shots, it was very rewarding as I feel good for the kids as I feel like we've been playing really well the last couple weeks and we haven't been able to breakthrough with a victory so they're a hell of a basketball team and I got a ton of respect for their program and for who they are. It was a great feeling to be able to beat a team with that quality.
On celebrating with the players and the ability to get a win:
"The adversity has been well documented and what they've been through and they haven't given up through all of this and they've really stayed the course and keep trying to get better as no one shows that better than Marrion Jackson and I'm so happy to see him come through and make plays throughout the game and have that kind of feeling that he has right now, since he had so many expectations and there's nobody that works harder in our program than him. Its great because on this stage he'd come through like that."
On students storming the court:
"It's great for them, its great for everybody, its good for everyone to enjoy a good moment and it was exciting to see that and got to fist pump a number of students, and see them, the crowd was fantastic throughout the entire game, and their energy never dropped in any of the overtimes. It was a fun game to be a part of and I'm glad that they could enjoy it as well."
On ball movement early:
"We knew their defense was good and that they were going to make you work every possession so we didn't want to get impatient. The guys trusted each other and moved the ball very well so it was great to see that. You're not going to beat a team like UCLA just soloing it one on one, we knew we had to make each other better in this game."
On Kimani Lawrence's free throws in the third overtime:
"Look at how the game ended, we fouled as around half court to not get a three, and make them shoot free throws and Marreon made a really good pass to Kimani and he (Marreon) really stepped up there. I think that made the lead six, so that gave us a little more cushion to overcome the turnover we had, and it was great that Kimani stepped up and made those free throws."
On being rewarded a win and moving on to Monday:
"It would have been tough to walk in here again and not come through with a win and we know that we are not backing into wins, we've been very competitive with these elite teams and we have been going toe-to-toe with them. Hopefully it will give us more confidence as we keep going this season."
ASU GRADUATE GUARD MARREON JACKSON
On where this game ranks on his collegiate career
"This is definitely number one. I played in a lot of games, with good atmospheres, but this definitely, at that level, beating the number 3 team in the country, it doesn't get any better than that".
On what it means to beat UCLA after losing some close games
"You know there's been a lot of games this season where it was down to two/three plays where we could've won. We've just been building, all that right there builds character for games like this. Hopefully we're gonna build off this game, get on a run, get going."
On what it means for him to have a great game against UCLA
"It's definitely a relief. You know, I've been dealing with my right hand, my shooting wrist has been messed up for the entire season, and it's just starting to getting better. If anyone knows what it's like to be a basketball player, just a shooter in general, that messes with your mental. I've been missing shots that I hit 10 out of 10, and it was taking a toll on my mental. I had to just go back to the basics really, repeating everything, getting in the gym, extra work on what I was doing just to get myself that confidence back. This game was definitely the game to do that, to come back like that."
On if his shooting mechanics are going back to normal
"Yeah, it definitely feels back normal. I was going at film from Toledo, just where my release point at and everything. Like I said, again, if you're a shooter, your wrist is the main important thing for you making shots. I waited too late to speak up about the injury, it kept getting worse and worse. I heard everybody, all the media and all that, so I just had to stay grounded, my support team, my family, everybody was keeping my spirits up, and today it was a great game for me and my team."
On when the injury happened
"Probably at the second game of the season my wrist got messed up and I didn't say anything until after we came back from Oregon, after we beat Oregon. I finally said something, but by then, it was already what it was, I just had to take the medicine or whatever, but we had no breaks for me to rest it, it was just a lot going on, but I'm very grateful that I'm back. I was doing what I could, with our schedule, you're going into Conference play and you play Thursday, then Saturday, whatever the case may be… It was definitely tough, but it felt good to be back out there and get my shot going."
On how they approach playing Arizona in two nights
"We're not gonna dwell on this win too much, but definitely acknowledge it. It's a great win. We've been playing great and hard all season, and everything it's starting to come together. Our offense, we're finally starting to get a rhythm, you know we had 11 new guys with 2 months to play with each other, I don't know what people expected. We stayed together, it's only us, all the outside and all that doesn't matter, we stayed together. Whoever is in that locker room, we stayed together, that was the main thing."
On seeing Jalen Graham battling through sickness in the last two games
"It helps that we got guys that you would wanna go to work with. Rather you're sick, not hitting, we know we can look to the right and left of us and look at that guy and know he's gonna go to work for us, we're brothers and that's what's going on."
On what the work from Kimani Lawrence and Jalen Graham does for the shooters
"It sets us up. With us being a great shooting team, we're not gonna get too many wide open looks. With those guys finding us and letting us get a good one going, it helps a lot, work from the inside out."
On how they defended Juzang late in the game
"He's a great player, but I'm pretty sure teams are starting to catch on how good we play defense, especially with the beginning of the season our offense not being as good as it is right now, we had to take our defense to another level, and that had to win us games. It's starting to all come along, our defense is good, our offense is starting to come along, we're gonna be a scary team to play against."
On how this team was built
"Like I said before, there's been a lot of games where it came down to two or three possessions where it didn't go on our favor, or we made a stupid mistake and lost the game. We built off that, it definitely hurts to lose those types of games, but with the team we had, the new guys and stuff, those games like these prepare us for games like today we just won, and now we're gonna go on Monday. It's a marathon, it's not a sprint."
On if the team is worried about facing Arizona after a triple overtime
"If you had been on any of Hurley's practices with us, you would've seen how much we ran. In summertime I've never been part of a program where we ran as much, so we're definitely in shape, we're ready. He made sure of that."