Sunday, February 10, 2008

Bruins Get Outworked In Seattle

By KS Wong
Bruin Basketball Report

Box Score

The Huskies didn't care whether they were riding a four game losing streak into Sunday afternoon's contest with the Bruins, nor did they take notice of UCLA's five game winning streak and No.4/5 ranking.  All the Huskies knew was they were at home and it was time to take the Bruins down again.

For the fourth consecutive time in Seattle, Washington downed UCLA, 71-61, before 10,000 at Bank of America Arena.

With all the success Coach Ben Howland has had at UCLA the past four seasons, he has never won in Seattle with his Bruins.

Washington came out from the start with more intensity and energy on both ends of the court and simply outworked UCLA in the game. 

On the defensive end, the Huskies took a page out of the Bruin play book by applying heavy pressure on the ball and forcing UCLA to set up their offense further away from the basket than they're used to, in addition, they doubled Kevin Love whenever he got close to the ball.

As a result,  Love finished with just 13 points on 3 of 8 shooting as he was never given any room to operate down low.  Love appeared satisfied with banging away inside with the bulky Artem Wallace and Jon Brockman rather than move to an open spot midrange or the short corner as he had in previous games for better offensive opportunities.

Point-guard Darren had one of his worst games as a Bruin.  Collison finished a meager 1 of 8 for 3 points and committed 8 turnovers - half of the team's 16 turnovers in the game.   

But perhaps the worst part of his performance was on the defensive end where he could not stop Husky guard Justin Dentmon from scoring.  Dentmon, who has been struggling all season, played up to his potential scoring 20 points on 7 of 12 shooting as he effortlessly went around Collison throughout the game, especially down the stretch.  It wasn't until Coach Howland switched Russell Westbrook onto Dentmon with a little over a minute remaining that he was stopped, but it was too late and the damage was done.

Washington (13-11, 4-7) shot 44.1% in the game but they were quicker to the loose ball, got the offensive rebounds, and seemingly wanted the game more than the Bruins. 

The Huskies outrebounded the Bruins 44-36 and got a stunning 18 offensive boards.  Jon Brockman dominated inside grabbing 17 rebounds, 9 on the offensive end, and scored 12 points.  When Dentmon wasn't scoring in the lane, it was Brockman hitting the key turnaround baseline jumper over Kevin Love.  No doubt UCLA missed junior forward Luc Richard Mbah a Moute's defense and rebounding.  In the previous game at Pauley Pavilion, the Bruins with Mbah a Moute, easily ouboarded the Huskies 32-26.

As mentioned in BBR's preview, Washington's sophomores, Dentmon and Quincy Pondexter, have been a disappointment and have not lived up to expectations, but in this game they showed their potential.  Aside from Dentmon's stellar play, Pondexter had 11 points and did a good job of disrupting the Bruin defense with his athleticism.

Josh Shipp led the Bruins in scoring with 19 points but even many of his shot attempts were usually with a Husky's hand in his face.  Westbrook added 18 points but he was just 5 of 16 from the field. 

The Bruins finished shooting just 34.4% from the field and were 1 of 16 on three-pointers as the Huskies did a good job taking UCLA out of their rhythm with strong defensive pressure.

With the loss, UCLA falls into a first place tie in the Pac-10 conference with Stanford.  The team travels home and will have a week to prepare for USC at the Galen Center next Sunday  Luc Richard Mbah a Moute has made good progress with his ankle injury and is probable for the game against the Trojans.

(photo credit: AP)



At Feb 10, 2008, 10:56:00 AM, Anonymous BruinFan said...

way to blow your #1 seed for the tny Bruins...

At Feb 10, 2008, 11:10:00 AM, Anonymous Coach Bob said...

Correction: UCLA defeated UW on 01/10/2004 in Seattle 86-84 in overtime. This was Ben Howland's 1st season as Head Coach of the Bruins.

At Feb 10, 2008, 11:10:00 AM, Anonymous Rome 06' said...

So many games left guys. Don't forget, for each of our losses...we have won 7...look at the upswing. We won't have a worse night than that shooting 3's, we are better than 1-16. Now let's see if we can rebound from this like we did from the USC loss.

At Feb 10, 2008, 11:32:00 AM, Anonymous geoff said...

let's hope that we are better than 1-16 shooting threes. It's not a good statistic to be ranked the 2nd worst in the pac-10 for 3-point percentage (maybe last after todays performance).
There are tons of games left, and if we have a strong showing in the rest of the season and the pac-10 tournament, then a #1 seed is pretty likely... but we CAN'T lose to inferior opponents. The only way we lose a #1 seed is if we continue to beat ourselves. Let's just regroup and take care of business in the Galen Center next week.

At Feb 10, 2008, 12:55:00 PM, Anonymous Rob said...

UCLA looked like a team that had been partying pretty hard the night before. Saturday night on the road. Who could resist? Boys will be boys.

At Feb 10, 2008, 3:33:00 PM, Anonymous ceeb said...

Superstar rock-caller Kevin Love, 3-8, 13pts, double-teamed the whole game.
From the AP:
"I was frustrated," Love said, using the same word he used Thursday after getting only eight shots at Washington State. "I was looking for the ball. ... I felt I was open and my teammates didn't find me."
Meanwhile, Josh Shipp says "They out-toughed us and out-hustled us" as the AP went on to note that "Love, the Bruins' leading scorer at 17.7 points per game coming in, missed five of his first seven shots while trading shoves with (Artem) Wallace. Wallace is two inches shorter than the 6-foot-10 Love, but continually used his comparable bulk to lean into the 271-pound Love on the low blocks."
Keep callin' for the rock, K-Love. You'll make the lottery yet.

At Feb 10, 2008, 3:35:00 PM, Anonymous Ceeb said...

Also, #1 seed doesn't mean as much as being out West. Probably need to finish 6th-7th or better end-of-season to guarantee that.

At Feb 10, 2008, 4:41:00 PM, Anonymous Bee said...

Man, Collison looked awful. Come on, 8 turnovers??? If he keeps this up, he's going to have to return next season. No more injury excuse to lean on, either. At this point last year, I thought Collison was a potential darkhorse lottery pick.
Westbrook and Love looking like our best two players right now. I never thought I'd be saying that...

At Feb 10, 2008, 8:49:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, that sucked!

At Feb 10, 2008, 10:37:00 PM, Anonymous Mike said...

I haven't seen the Bruins play that poorly in a long time; they looked like they were asleep. Can't imagine what practice will be like this week getting ready for USC...I'm just glad I won't be there. I hate pain.

At Feb 10, 2008, 11:22:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did they bring Lavin back without telling us?

At Feb 11, 2008, 12:54:00 AM, Anonymous Damon said...

The inbound play at the end of the game, where the Huskie threw the ball off of Aboya's face, needs to be addressed by the Pac10. That was violent and classless.
I can't believe Aboya didn't knock that guy's head into the front row.
Aboya should be president of the USA for his composure and calm.

At Feb 11, 2008, 8:11:00 AM, Anonymous Brew In said...

If we have a performance like this against a lower seeded opponent in the tourney, guess what guys...our season will be OVER and then we can really be disappointed!
Super gut check coming up at the Galen Center. If we don't beat the USC Condoms by at least 10 (what they BEAT us by), I think this is where we will see what type of heart our Affalo-less team really has!


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