Friday, February 19, 2016

UCLA Comeback Falls Short Versus Utah 75-73

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LOS ANGELES - Isaac Hamilton scored a team-leading 25 points in a 75-73 loss to Utah before 7,249 at Pauley Pavilion in Pac-12 game on Thursday night.
Trailing by 14 points with nearly seven minutes left in the second half, Hamilton nearly helped bring the Bruins (14-12, 5-8) all the way back. He scored 10 points in a 3-minute, 30-second span late in the second half to help UCLA reduced Utah’s lead from 66-53 to 70-68.
UCLA reduced Utah’s lead to just two points – 70-68 – with 2:30 left in the game, but the Bruins were unable to tie the contest on two ensuing possessions. The visiting Utes (20-7, 9-5) increased their advantage to five points with 15 seconds remaining on a 3-pointer by Brandon Taylor, who finished with 12 points and seven assists.
UCLA’s Thomas Welsh hit a jumper with six seconds left, trimming Utah’s cushion to three points, before Kyle Kuzma broke free on the inbounds play and sealed Utah’s victory with a dunk with three seconds to play. Aaron Holiday nailed a buzzer-beating 3-pointer, but it wasn’t enough.
Bryce Alford finished with 11 points for the Bruins, while Welsh and Holiday each scored 10.
Utah’s Jordan Loveridge scored a team-leading 17 points. Jakob Poeltl notched a double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds for the Utes.
UCLA and Utah were tied at halftime, 31-31, before the Utes raced to a 64-50 advantage with 7:02 to play. Alford’s 3-point shot sparked a 10-3 scoring run for the Bruins, helping bring UCLA to within seven points (67-60) with 4:27 remaining.
The Bruins followed with an 8-0 scoring run, capped by a layup from Hamilton, trimming Utah’s cushion to 70-68 at the 2:30 mark. That was as close as the Bruins could get in the game’s final minutes.
UCLA is back in action on Saturday evening, hosting Colorado in Pauley Pavilion. Game time is 8 p.m. UCLA’s game against the Buffaloes will be nationally televised by Fox Sports 1.

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