Sunday, January 11, 2009

UCLA 64; U$C 60

U$C may play their home games there, but for now, the Galen Center is UCLA's gym.  The Bruins won there for the third time, and they have yet to drop a game in that building.  But it wasn't for lack of trying.

I thought UCLA did a poor job supporting the ball carrier.  U$C played very good defense around the basket.  UCLA penetrated the lane a number of times only to find themselves among several defenders.  That's gonna happen, and it's not the end of the world, but you need your teammates to get into position to help out in that situation, and I think the Bruins did a very good job of that tonight.  

The defense was a little hit or miss.  They allowed the Trojans to shoot almost 50% from the field.  But the Bruins really turned up the intensity down the stretch.  They held U$C to nine points over the last 10+ minutes of the game, and that was the difference.  

In the battle of top freshman, Demar Derozan scored 15 points and added 6 rebounds, compared to Jrue Holliday's 13 points.  Both shot the ball well.  Derozan made six of his eight shots, while Holliday made 5 of 9, including 3 of 4 from long range.  UCLA continues to be unaffected by the deeper three this year.  They shot 40% from the arc in tonight's game.  U$C did an excellent job containing Mike Roll.  He missed both of his three point attempts.  But Nikola Dragovic was a weapon for UCLA tonight.  He scored a career high 14 points and grabbed four rebounds.  He was only 3 for 9 from three, but he just seems to look more relaxed and confident on the floor this year, and he looks more prepared to shoot when he gets the ball.  Darren Collison was, as expected, UCLA's best player.  He finished with 18 points on 6 for 9 shooting, and added 7 assists.  

This wasn't UCLA's best effort, but the bottom line is that UCLA is now 3-0 in the Pac 10, and they have yet to play a home game.  They're in a good position to go something like 14-4, which should be good enough to once again win the conference championship.  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Holliday's game was solid all around. He doesn't force his offense and made some nice defensive plays when ucla switched him to Derozan in the 2nd half. Shipp was rather quiet but hit a couple big shots in the 2nd half. Gordon had a some good minutes off the bench, rebounding and had a nice steal late in the game. The lack of ucla's bigs being able to finish strong at the hoop nearly cost them the game. Meanwhile U$C's short bench kills them.