Senior guard Lazeric Jones drives past Oregon State senior guard Ahmad Starks during Thursday’s game against OSU in Corvallis, Ore. Jones led UCLA in scoring with 17; five Bruins finished with double-figure points...ALL for freakin naught. Photo Daily Bruin Blaine Ohigashi
Published: Jan. 19, 2012 Updated: Jan. 20, 2012 2:14 p.m.
/ THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER
By SAM STRONG
Published January 20, 2012, 1:53 am in
CORVALLIS, Ore. — Oregon State came into Thursday’s game at Gill Coliseum having lost to UCLA 13 straight times. From the outset of Thursday’s game, it was clear the Beavers could play with the once-powerful Bruins.
Over the span of that 13-game win streak, UCLA went to three straight Final Fours, produced multiple first-round NBA draft picks and dominated the conference. Oregon State didn’t even sniff the NCAA Tournament.
Thursday, it was Oregon State who came into the game with the conference’s leading scorer, not to mention a strong home-court advantage. UCLA hung around for all of the first half and much of the second, trading the lead back and forth, but a decisive second-half run helped Oregon State beat UCLA for the first time since 2005, 87-84.
The Beavers (12-7, 2-5 Pac-12) opened the game on an 8-0 run which UCLA was able to quickly erase. As for the 14-4 run Oregon State mounted in the second half, that was the nail in the coffin.
Oregon State guard Jared Cunningham, the leading scorer in the conference, was held in check during the first half, scoring just five points, but it was his 3-pointer combined with a few nice defensive plays and an emphatic driving layup that helped put the Bruins (10-8, 3-3) away. He finished with 21 points, 10 of them coming off free throws.
“There were about three possessions there where we made bad decisions, got sped up and turned it over and it led to easy baskets for them,” UCLA coach Ben Howland said. “We made mistakes because we were going faster than we’re used to doing and that’s what that defense does. We let the pressure get to us.”
The Beavers’ defense kept UCLA confused for most of the evening. So much so that at one point during the second half, Howland called back-to-back timeouts because the Bruins were unable to inbound the ball on the sideline.
“They were mixing up their defenses a lot and that’s something we have to adjust to,” said senior guard Lazeric Jones. “I feel like we did a better job at that in the second half than we did in the first half.”
UCLA turned the ball over 13 times, leading to 20 Oregon State points while Howland continued to burn timeouts. With 11:36 left to play, he was fresh out. The loss also cost Howland a chance at win No. 200 as the Bruins’ coach.
Oregon State was also able to keep sophomore center Joshua Smith off balance for the majority of the game. The Beavers threw a bevy of defenders at Smith to limit him to 10 points on the offensive end. Smith was a step slow on defense as well, choosing to hip check Oregon State forward Eric Moreland and send him to the line to extend the Beavers’ lead in the midst of their second-half run.
“Josh had a hard matchup defensively because he had to rotate to the perimeter,” Howland said. “He scored his 10 points and did a decent job there but I thought (redshirt sophomore center Anthony Stover) was the one guy that played good post defense.”
That the Beavers have long been the doormat of the Pac-12 was clear in the waning moments on Thursday.
Despite the final two minutes of play being nothing more than fouls and free throws, albeit a stretch in which UCLA was able to close Oregon State’s lead, Oregon State’s fans stayed till the end, exploding with cheers when the clock finally hit zero.
“This win could have really helped us and given us some momentum going into Saturday but this loss is on us,” senior guard Jerime Anderson said. “We had too many turnovers and too many defensive breakdowns. When you allow a team to get confident and get going, you saw what happened.”
Oregon State ends a 13-game losing streak against the Bruins, beating them for the first time since 2005.
By Chris Foster
Los Angeles Times11:07 PM PST, January 19, 2012
Reporting from Corvallis, Ore. — This was the type of streak that UCLA fans were comfortable with, even expected, when the Bruins dominated college basketball.
This was the type of loss UCLA fans have grown accustomed to this season.
The misstep that was the Bruins' 87-84 loss to Oregon State at Gill Coliseum once would have prompted Beavers fans to rush deliriously from the stands onto the court, but Thursday night it merely sent them into a rainy night mildly happy.
The defeat ended UCLA's 13-game winning streak against Oregon State, which dated to 2005, and left the Bruins a step behind teams trying to distinguish themselves from the crowd in the Pac-12 Conference race.
There are five teams with two conference losses chasing first-place California. UCLA (10-8, 3-3 in the Pac-12) missed out on a chance to join that group.
"After three consecutive wins, this is disappointing," Coach Ben Howland said.
The Bruins have won only one game outside of Southern California this season and now have the tough game on this trip, facing Oregon (14-5, 5-2) Saturday.
"This is a tough one," said guard Jerime Anderson, who had 11 points and nine assists for the Bruins. "We thought we'd come in here and win."
The Bruins had done so for years, beating the Beavers (12-7, 2-5) the last six times in Corvallis. They hadn't lost to Oregon State since the 2005 conference tournament.
All that ended when the Beavers started a 19-8 run with 15 minutes left. Jared Cunningham started it with a three-pointer that broke a 51-51 tie.
He scored nine points during the run, which left the Beavers ahead 70-59 with nine minutes left.
The problem was simple to Howland, whose team shot 57% from the field.
"We couldn't make any defensive stops," Howland said. "You shoot 57% and lose? That doesn't happen very often."
The Bruins helped out, committing three turnovers during that stretch.
"There were about three possession where we made bad decisions and it led to easy baskets," Howland said.
Still, Anderson said, "You have to credit them."
Oregon State shot 58% from the field. Cunningham had 21 points and Devon Collier 20.
"Everyone played big," said Cunningham, who scored 16 of his points in the second half. "When we needed it, some one came up with a big play."
When the Bruins needed that, the opposite occurred. UCLA had a chance to cut the Beavers' lead to four with five minutes left, but Tyler Lamb's lob to David Wear sailed out of bounds.
Oregon State scored the first eight points of the first half and it got the last three on Angus Brandt's three-pointer with six seconds left for a 39-38 lead at halftime.
The Bruins froze at the start, going without a field goal for the first 31/2 minutes before Travis Wear scored on a layup.
Lazeric Jones kicked some life into the Bruins, scoring nine points in the last eight minutes of the first half.
With Oregon State leading 26-21, Jones had a three-pointer and layup to cut the gap. Jones, who is 6 feet 1 and 187 pounds, wrestled Joe Barton, Oregon State's 6-7, 280 forward, to a draw, giving the ball back to the Bruins.
"This loss is on us," Anderson said.
Los Angeles Daily News
Posted: 01/19/2012 10:13:41 PM PST
Updated: 01/19/2012 11:29:01 PM PST
But the play that immediately preceded the Cunningham dunk?
It was more indicative of how the game went for the Bruins.
Senior point guard Jerime Anderson, facing a frantic pressure defense by the Beavers, hurled the ball six feet over 6-foot-10 David Wear's head.
Pretty much sums it up.
Oregon State (12-7, 2-5 Pac-12) capitalized on UCLA miscues and benefited from some hot shooting performances to win 87-84 and halt the Bruins' three-game win streak.
Much of UCLA's effort was a study in offensive mismanagement, the Bruins doomed both early and late.
There were errant passes that seemed to be destined for nobody - at least nobody in blue - and steamrolls disguised as drives to the basket that resulted in offensive fouls as Oregon State scored 20 points off 13 UCLA turnovers.
"That's their game; you can tell they're a run-and-gun team, and they did what they're supposed to do," Bruins senior guard Lazeric Jones said. "When people turn it over, that's what you're supposed to do. You're supposed to capitalize on it."
With a zone defense that frequently caused the Bruins fits, the Beavers got off and running.
UCLA (10-8, 3-3) forced 12 turnovers itself, but was unable to get into the fastbreak, finishing with just five points off Oregon State mistakes.
Never was the mismatch in tempo more evident than a short stretch midway through the second half, with the game still undecided.
After Bruins center Joshua Smith tied the score at 51, Oregon State went on a 7-0 run to regain control as UCLA committed three straight turnovers.
"They hurt us by speeding us up," UCLA head coach Ben Howland said. "We got sped up; one time we had a 3-on-2 and instead of attacking the basket, we're pulling up for a 3 and Jerime (Anderson) threw it away to (Tyler) Lamb. We made some mistakes like that when we were going faster than we were used to going. We let the pressure get to us."
Added Anderson: "That was definitely the turning point in the game. It gave them a little momentum and they carried it until the end of the game. We were never able to get all the way back, close to even tying."
Oregon State's spurt was eerily similar to its run last season, as it came back from a 17-point deficit to take a late lead, only to watch UCLA put the finishing touches on a 62-57 win.
On Thursday, however, things would continue to get worse for the Bruins, who simply looked lost after the Beavers' big run, when they stretched their lead to 12.
Oregon State shot 58 percent from the field and converted 25 of 33 free throws - UCLA only made it to the line 12 times, making nine - and maintained a large buffer for much of the stretch run.
"They got a lot of baskets right under the rim," Jones said. "Their guards made a lot of good shots, some tough shots, but a lot of their baskets came right under the rum. They had a lot of hook shots, layups, things that defensively we have to stop."
The Beavers were paced as usual by the Pac-12's leading scorer Cunningham, who had 15 of his game-high 21 points in the second half while particularly dangerous from the free-throw line, where he made 9 of 10 in the second half.
More surprising, though, was the contribution of forward Devon Collier, who added 20 points, and center Angus Brandt, who added 13 along with guard Ahmad Starks.
Jones led UCLA with 17 points and David and Travis Wear each had 16 for the Bruins, who finished with five players in double-figures and had 21 assists in their first loss to the Beavers since 2005.
"This loss is on us," Anderson said. "We did the things to put us in the position to win the game but we had too many turnovers and too many defensive breakdowns. ... You don't lose too many games when you shoot 57 percent, but you allow a team to get confident and get going, and you see what happened tonight."
AP Photo/Rick BowmerJerime Anderson, who scored 11 points Thursday, said the Bruins had too many defensive breakdowns.
CORVALLIS, Ore. -- On a day when UCLA could have gained some ground in the Pac-12 Conference race, the Bruins instead fell flat on the defensive end in an 87-84 loss to Oregon State on Thursday night at Gill Coliseum.
UCLA (10-8, 3-3) gave up 80 points for only the third time this season and failed to capitalize on losses earlier Thursday by Stanford (15-4, 5-2) and Washington (11-7, 4-2), two of the four teams that were ahead of UCLA in the conference race at the start of the day.
Instead the Bruins dropped from a tie for fifth place into seventh place in the conference race and their title hopes are fading fast after they had gotten a glimpse of hope with a three-game win streak before Thursday.
Oregon State (11-7, 2-5) ended a three-game losing streak and improved to 9-2 at home while UCLA dropped to 1-3 in road games.
"It makes it hurt a little more," guard Jerime Anderson said. "I think this really could have helped us and given us a little momentum but this loss is on us. We did the things that put us in the position to win the game, but we had too many turnovers and too many defensive breakdowns."
Five observations from the game:
1UCLA's defense was not up to par
The Bruins allowed Oregon State to shoot 58 percent for the game, with the Beavers' guards continually getting penetration and the post players getting easy, point-blank layups.
"Our whole problem tonight was defensively we couldn’t get stops," coach Ben Howland said. "We just didn’t do the job on the defensive end of the floor and after having three good defensive efforts in a row, it’s disappointing and we have to bounce back."
UCLA had struggled defensively early this season, but appeared to have turned a corner by holding its past three opponents to 36, 48 and 36 percent.
The Bruins played man-to-man for most of Thursday, but switching to zone didn't help much. Howland called for the zone four times and Oregon State scored on three of those possessions, twice on 3-pointers.
"When we went to the zone, they scored three of the four times so we went away from it," Lazeric Jones said.
2UCLA really got hurt in the post
Oregon State is a guard-dominant team with Jared Cunningham and Ahmad Starks the two leading scorers this season, but power forward Devon Collier and center Angus Brandt combined for 33 points on 14-for-21 shooting.
They were getting dunks, layups, making short jump shots and tough shots from all around the basket and were a big reason why Oregon State was able to shoot such a high percentage.
"They got a lot of baskets right around the rim," Jones said. "Their guards made a lot of good shots. They made some tough shots, but a lot came right under the rim. Hook shots, layups, stuff defensively we have to stop."
Forward David Wear said the defensive game plan was centered on stopping Cunningham and Starks and the Oregon State post surprised the Bruins off guard a little bit.
"We got caught off guard because we were focusing mainly on Cunningham and their guards," Wear said. "The posts were kind of sneaking under us and establishing deep position and getting us in trouble that way. We gave up way too many easy buckets."
3The tempo threw UCLA off rhythm
Oregon State plays a high-pressure defense and tries to speed up the game ,and while the Bruins dealt with it well for the most part, they lost their cool for a key stretch that changed the game.
With the score tied at 51-51 and 13:15 remaining, the Bruins let themselves get caught up in a run-and-gun, street ball type of game and had turnovers on three consecutive possessions. The Beavers turned it into a 17-5 run and led, 66-55, with 10:04 to play. UCLA never regained the lead.
"They hurt us by speeding us up," Howland said. "We got sped up. Instead of attacking the basket, we’re pulling up for a three. We made some mistakes like that when we were going faster than we were used to playing. That’s what that defense does, that pressure. We let the pressure get to us a little bit."
4The Bruins failed to take advantage of Oregon State mistakes
Statistically the game was pretty even across the board with the exception of points off of turnovers. Oregon State had 20 points off of 13 UCLA turnovers, the Bruins had five points off of 12 Oregon State turnovers.
"They did what they were supposed to do," Jones said. "When people turn the ball over you have to capitalize on it."
Anderson credited the Oregon State defense with creating the easy baskets because with the half-court pressure, players are in position to transition when they force turnovers.
"Usually when you're in a zone and you create turnovers, it creates good opportunities on the break and that's what they had tonight," Anderson said.
5The UCLA offense looked good
It's not often UCLA scores 80 points and it's even more rare when the Bruins score 80 points and lose. It happened only one time last season in a loss to Virginia Commonwealth in the Preseason NIT.
Jones had 17 points, Travis and David Wear had 16 points each, Jerime Anderson had 11 points and Joshua Smith had 10 and the Bruins shot 57.6 percent from the field with 21 assists.
"We shot 57 percent for the game and lost," Howland said. "That doesn’t happen very often when you shoot that high a percentage and lose. Shooting 57 percent, you expect to have a good chance to win."