UCLA: Jules Bernard scores 15 points as Bruins beat Arizona 75-59
January 27, 2022
The third-ranked Arizona Wildcats experienced their first loss in league play as UCLA Bruins gave fierce offense and gritty defense on Tuesday night in Edwin W. Pauley Pavilion of UCLA campus.
The seventh-ranked UCLA led as team star player Johnny Juzang who ran to the Final Four last season and Jules Bernard scored 15 points each backed by tough defense by the Bruins, eventually resulting in their fourth victory in a row this season.
The Bruins surely gave the Wildcats a hard time and consecutively held the team to a season-low in points in a fully packed arena. Pauley Pavilion fully welcomed fans after being partially closed since Jan. 6 because of surging COVID-19 cases.
“This group of guys, we love these types of games, we love these big games and big matchups," said Juzang. “Everybody battled.”
“To come out and prove that we have the energy, fight and grit to beat a team like Arizona, it was telling,” Bernard added.
“It's just been something we’ve been impressing all week: trying to take our team and our game to the next level, find that intensity that we have and put it out on the floor,” said the Bruins guard Jaime Jaquez Jr., who scored all 10 of his points in the second half.
Both Arizona Wildcats and UCLA Bruins gave a solid start. In the first 6 1/2 minutes, players from both sides missed no 3-pointer with 4 went to Arizona and UCLA making its first three. The Bruins (14-2, 6-1) later started to lead the game for good during a 12-0 run in the first half.
Wildcats Canadian guard Bennedict Mathurin scored 10 in the second half and grabbed 10 rebounds for the Wildcats (16-2, 6-1). Center Christian Koloko added 11 points and seven rebounds for Arizona, with six dunks from the 7-foot-1 center as the highlight of his performance that night.
The Wildcats used a 19-11 surge in an attempt to close to 61-53 as they were down by 16. Azuolas Tubelis added six points and Mathurin continued to score another 7 a total of 16 points in the entire game but his success didn't save Arizona from losing their five-game winning streak.
“Pretty good plan against us,” said Mathurin. “We needed to prepare a little bit better. We’ll adjust.”
UCLA Jaquez Jr. gave his first eight points during the Wildcats' spurt in the second half before adding another two but UCLA played a stiff game after three minutes.
"I haven’t seen Jaime jump that high in three years. He had three blocked shots, are you kidding me?”,
UCLA coach Mick Cronin commented. Back-to-back 3-pointers from David Singleton and Bernard revived the game and pushed the lead to 14.
The Wildcats lost another chance as they missed 11 3-point attempts and their shootings were cut to 35% in the half. The Bruins managed to run off 12 points to erase a four-point deficit in a row and shot 53% in the half. They eventually led by 15 and finally settled for a 40-29 advantage at the break
“By far our most spirited 40 minutes of the year,” said Cronin. Arizona is yet UCLA's highest-ranked opponent to play since No. 1 Kentucky on December 3, 2015. “Effort matters. Our effort was awesome,
Betting on this game
The pregame odds for this game looked like this
|ATS||-2.5 (-110)||+2.5 (-110)|
|Game Totals||150 Over||150 Under|
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