Feb. 12, 2009
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - For the second time this season, Arizona failed to break the 40-point mark against UCLA as the Wildcats dropped a 58-39 decision to the Bruins, Thursday evening in Pac-10 play at Pauley Pavilion.
In a mirror image of the first time the teams played at McKale Center last month. After scoring 38 points, shooting 23.4 percent for the game and making just two second half field goals, the Wildcats put up similar numbers with one more total point, a season-low 22.0 percent field goal mark and three field goals after intermission.
Arizona also struggled to deal with the overall size and athleticism of UCLA for the second-straight game. The Bruins claimed a 49-32 advantage on the glass, posting 19 offensive rebounds and scoring 17 second chance points.
The game started at a pace that was much more suited for the deep bench of the Bruins. While the Wildcats were a respectable 5-of-12 from the field over the opening eight minutes, UCLA started 8-of-13 (.615) with six different players scoring.
The Arizona bench was once again active early as it was last weekend against Oregon. Beatrice Bofia came in and hit a pair of jumpers while Amina Njonkou was also on target early on while also dishing out a pair of assists. The Wildcats stayed close at 19-18 with 7:40 to go before the offense went silent.
Arizona scored just one point over the next 5:31, a free throw by Ify Ibekwe, giving UCLA the chance to build a 30-19 advantage. The Cats did show some life over the last two minutes and went to the locker room trailing by six.
UCLA kept things rolling to start the second half, pushing the lead out to 39-26 after a free throw by Doreena Campbell with 14:11 to play. As they have all season, Arizona made one final push to make the Bruins sweat down the stretch.
A steal and lay-up by Ibekwe sparked a 9-1 run that helped the Wildcats close the gap to 40-35 with 7:12 to go. However, UCLA answered with a 10-2 run of their own to pull away for good.
Erica Tukiainen led all scorers with 21 points for UCLA (15-7, 6-5), hitting 9-of-12 shots and 3-of-5 three-pointers while also grabbing 7 rebounds. Doreena Campbell also tallied 12 points to go along with 9 rebounds and 4 assists.
Ibekwe had her 12th double-double of the season with 13 points and 11 rebounds, but made just 2-of-14 field goal attempts. Courtney Clements added 10 points, all in the first half.
Arizona (9-14, 2-10) visits USC on Sunday, February 15 with tip-off at the Galen Center scheduled for 12 p.m. The game, which will be a Pink Zone game, will be televised on Fox Sports Net Arizona with Jim Watson and Mary Murphy providing the call.