UCLA 63, Arizona State 59

The long and the short of this game was that the Bruins started out blazing in the first half, going 14-1 on the Sun Devils. Then ASU came roaring back and even lead by one with less than two minutes in the game. UCLA began the second half on a 15-3 run and looked like they had the game locked up, but once again ASU made a run. Then the Bruins went on a run, but then so did the Sun Devils. It was a pair of Erica Tukiainen free throws at the end of the game that put UCLA up for good.

Story and box score.

I was trying to figure out what about the Bruins is different this year – what makes them nationally ranked. Their quickness and their defense are the things that stand out most. And I wonder if the success of newcomers Jasmine Dixon and Markel Walker has helped the other players elevate their games.

UCLA’s swarming defense kept Arizona State out of the paint for a long time in the first half…..

…..and when ASU did put up a shot, the Bruins boxed out.

Jasmine Dixon gets the rebound – one of her seven on the night.

Didn’t the Sun Devils used to have their names on the backs of their uniforms?

Doreena Campbell was yelling at her teammates from the point position early in the first half. I don’t hear her yell much.

Campbell shoots. She had ten points.

Dixon grabs the pass from Campbell and prepares to make the drive.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks for the report. I always enjoy them, and your photos.

    Now then, turning toward today's (Saturday's) game against 'Zona, here's a few random, unrelated things that caught my unlearned eye:

    *'Zona's coach (Butts) doesn't exactly go very deep into her bench. Only 2 subs got up off the Wildcat pine (tallying a whopping bench contribution of 7 points, 9 boards and 1 assist). And White and Thomas played pretty much the *entire* game, without a break! They must've been exhausted by game's end. Those are two good players, though.

    *Seems like 'Zona's Coach Butts (not *our* Coach Butts) rides the refs a *lot*. When she was up off her seat, it looked 80% of her time was spent bitching out refs, and 20% of her time was spent actually coaching. With our staff, it's the exact opposite. I think I prefer the latter.

    *We only won the rebounding battle by 2, and actually got outrebounded (very slightly) on the offensive boards, which clearly frustrated Coach Caldwell. With about 8 minutes to go in the game, after a single possession in which 'Zona got about 4 consecutive offensive boards, Coach sat both Jasmine and Markel, and put Nzekwe and Alexander out on the floor together… which basically never happens (certainly not that late in a game still technically up for grabs). Message sent. When Jasmine and Markel got back on the floor, they seemed to fight much harder for loose balls the rest of the way.

    *Only 11 turnovers today! For us, that's like zero. To be fair, that was partly a function of the fact that we, for better or worse, were not super-aggressive in transition today. Instead of forcing the action down the key in transition as we've tended to for the past month (which has resulted in lots of points *and* lots of miscues), it seemed that we pulled the ball out a lot and reset in the half-court. And it's no secret, of course, that the half-court O is not this team's strong suit (witness the 38.7% FG% for the game).

    *In praise of Rebekah Gardner on D: she's not that fast laterally and seems to get beat off the dribble by quicker guards (like Thomas, today), but she's got a surprisingly long wingspan which she uses to fix the mistakes her feet make. 3 blocks for Rebekah today… one of 'em a demoralizing spike out of bounds that lit up the house.

    *Speaking of the house: a relatively decent turnout today. 2100 reported. Keep coming out, folks!

    *My daughter is gonna miss Allison ('cause she's from Culver City, as are we), but I'm gonna miss Erika, because I like a player who's not shy from the outside. Rebekah's gonna have to learn to pull the trigger when she has an opening, 'cause today she seemed somewhat hesitant. After Doreena leaves (next year), who's gonna be conscience-less from downtown? Shoot the ball, Rebekah!

    *Nice to see Allison and Mo get to take curtain calls at game's end, and to see Erika join those two as they waded through the band, giving high-fives. There's a very nice rapport between these ladies and the band, and it's fun to see.

    *My daughter and I are looking forward to going to Galen to catch the Pac-10 Tourney. Our first game is on Friday night (at around 7 o'clock). Hope to see some of you there!

    Go Bruins!

    Patrick Meighan
    UCLA Class of '95

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