– Norman Powell and Tony Parker each scored 16 points as No. 11-seed UCLA dropped a 74-62 decision to No. 2-seed Gonzaga in a South Regional semifinal of the NCAA Tournament on Friday evening at NRG Stadium.HOUSTON
Powell, who capped his collegiate career Friday having played in all 141 UCLA games the previous four seasons, made 8 of 19 shots from the field for UCLA (22-14).
Przemek Karnowski totaled 18 points and nine rebounds to pace the second-seeded Bulldogs (35-2), who advanced to face Duke (32-4) in the Regional Final on Sunday in Houston.
Parker finished with a double-double for the Bruins, logging 16 points and a game-high 11 rebounds.
UCLA trailed throughout the game but was able to reduce Gonzaga’s 35-28 halftime cushion to one point – 35-34 – with just over 18 minutes to play in the second half.
From there, Gonzaga used a 12-0 run to claim a 47-34 cushion with 13:32 to play in the game. The Bruins never closed the gap to fewer than 10 points the rest of the way.
Gonzaga earned its second victory over the Bruins this season, having edged UCLA by an 87-74 tally in Pauley Pavilion on Dec. 13.
UCLA finished with three players scoring in double figures in the rematch – Powell (16), Parker (16) and Isaac Hamilton (11).
The Bulldogs won the battle on the boards, out-rebounding UCLA by a 50-39 margin. Kyle Wiltjer totaled a team-high 10 rebounds for Gonzaga and also registered eight points.
Neither team had much success shooting from long-range at NRG Stadium, the home of the NFL’s Houston Texans that will be used for the 2016 Final Four. UCLA made just 3 of 13 attempts from 3-point range while Gonzaga shot 3-for-19 from beyond the arc.
NOTES: UCLA concluded its season with at least 22 wins and a Sweet 16 appearance for the second consecutive season, having lost five of its eight rotation players last season to the NBA … in two seasons at UCLA, Bruins’ head coach Steve Alford has helped the program compile a 50-23 record, including a 32-3 mark in Pauley Pavilion … Norman Powell concluded his UCLA career with 1,376 career points (No. 28 on the all-time list) … Powell’s 141 career games at UCLA is the fourth-highest total in program history.