Wednesday, February 22, 2017

No. 5 UCLA Plays at Arizona State on Thursday

The Bruins will play at Arizona State this Thursday in a matchup televised on ESPN2.

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LOS ANGELES – No. 5 UCLA (24-3, 11-3) returns to the court at Arizona State (13-15, 6-9) on Thursday, Feb. 23. Game time this Thursday is slated for 6 p.m. PT (7 p.m. MT). The Bruins have won five consecutive games, having most recently cruised past crosstown rival USC, 102-70, before a sellout crowd in Pauley Pavilion last Saturday night.
Venue: Wells Fargo Arena (10,754)
Tipoff Time: 6:05 p.m. (PT)/7:05 p.m. (MT)
Television: ESPN2
TV Talent: Dave Pasch (play-by-play), Bill Walton (analyst)
Radio: AM 1150
Radio Talent: Josh Lewin (play-by-play), Tracy Murray (analyst)
SIRIUS/XM Radio Channel: Ch. 134/Ch. 197
SIRIUS App. Channel: Ch. 959
- UCLA has four games remaining on its regular-season schedule. The Bruins face Arizona State (Feb. 23) and No. 4 Arizona (Feb. 25) on the road before returning home to play Washington (March 1) and Washington State (March 4).
- The Bruins have gone 5-0 through February and are the only Pac-12 program this season to have logged a perfect record this month. No UCLA team has gone undefeated in February since the 1994-95 squad went 9-0.
- UCLA's overall field goal percentage (53.3%) is the highest mark in the nation. No team in NCAA Division I has shot higher than 53.0% in a single season since Duke finished with a 53.6 percentage as the 1992 NCAA Champions.
- The Bruins have averaged a nation-leading 21.7 assists per game, the highest per-game average of any NCAA Division I team since 1991, when Final Four participant UNLV set the NCAA record with 24.7 assists per game.
- Most recently, senior guard Bryce Alford moved into the No. 7 slot on UCLA's all-time scoring list (1,802 points) with a 26-point, 6-assist effort in the Bruins' 102-70 win over USC in Pauley Pavilion before a sellout crowd last Saturday.
- The Bruins continue to lead the nation in points per game (92.3), assists per game (21.7), total assists (586), assist-turnover ratio (1.85) and overall field goal percentage (53.3 pct), through games played Sunday, Feb. 19.
The Bruins extended their win streak to five games – all in the month of February – with a 102-70 victory over crosstown rival USC last Saturday evening. Five Bruins scored in double figures, with Bryce Alford (26 points, six assists), TJ Leaf (19 points, eight rebounds) and Thomas Welsh (16 points, 16 rebounds) helping to lead the way. Lonzo Ball had 15 points, eight rebounds and eight assists as the Bruins snapped a four-game losing skid to the Trojans. UCLA made 42 shots, tied for its third-highest total of the year, and attempted a season-high 78 field goals.
UCLA has picked up Pac-12 "road sweeps" at Colorado and Utah (Jan. 12-14) and at Washington State and Washington (Feb. 1-4). In six seasons that the Pac-12 has included Colorado and Utah, the Rocky Mountain road sweep has been accomplished just four times – by UCLA in 2013 and 2017 and by Arizona in 2014 and 2015. UCLA has gone 10-2 in road and neutral site games this season, including a 97-92 win at then-No. 1 Kentucky on Dec. 3.
In UCLA's win at Washington (Feb. 4), four Bruins scored at least 20 points in the same game for the first time since Dec. 22, 1994, when Tyus Edney had 28 points in a 137-100 win over George Mason. UCLA's 107 points in the win at Washington (Feb. 4) were the most by a road team in a Pac-12 regulation contest (no overtime) since Jan. 10, 1998, when Arizona won at Washington by a 110-91 margin.
Bryce AlfordIsaac Hamilton and TJ Leaf have each scored at least 32 points this season, with all  three performances taking place in Pac-12 play. Alford had a career-high 37 points at Colorado (Jan. 12), Hamilton recorded a season-high 33 points versus Arizona State (Jan. 19) and Leaf had 32 points at Washington State (Feb. 1). In all, six Bruins – including Lonzo BallThomas Welsh and Aaron Holiday – have scored at least 20 points in a game this season.
Lonzo Ball (15.4 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 7.6 apg) has emerged as a legitimate National Player of the Year and Freshman Player of the Year candidate. He has twice secured Pac-12 Player of the Week honors and will enter this Thursday's game as the nation's only player to have averaged at least 10 points, four rebounds and seven assists per game. He continues to lead the nation in both assists per game (7.6) and total assists (206), having recorded UCLA's highest single-season freshman assist total. He has surpassed Pooh Richardson's mark of 179 assists in 1985-86.
Lonzo Ball's Pac-12-leading 2.99 assist-turnover ratio is the fourth-highest figure in the NCAA record book for any freshman. Iowa State's Monte Morris set the NCAA freshman record in 2013-14 (4.79).
UCLA has averaged 92.3 points per game, the fourth-highest average in school history (1971-72 averaged a Pac-12-best 94.6 ppg). UCLA's 21.7 assists per game is the second-highest mark in school history behind the 1973-74 team (22.4 apg), since the assist was regularly tracked by UCLA in 1973-74. The Bruins' 1.85 assist-turnover ratio is the highest mark recorded at UCLA (since 1978-79). In the NCAA record book (since 1992-93), UCLA's 1.85 ratio is the second-highest figure behind West Virginia's 2.01 mark set during the 2005-06 season.
UCLA has shot 42.1 percent from three-point distance, a figure that currently stands as the third-highest in school history. The Bruins' 1988-89 squad made 42.6 percent of its three-point attempts. UCLA's total of 278 made three-pointers stands as the best single-season mark in school history.
UCLA looks to sweep the season series against Arizona State on Thursday night, as the Bruins secured a 102-80 victory over the Sun Devils in Pauley Pavilion on Thursday, Jan. 19. UCLA leads the all-time series against Arizona State by a 69-19 margin. The Bruins have won six of their last seven meetings against Arizona State. Last year, UCLA downed the Sun Devils in Tempe, Ariz., by a 78-65 margin (Feb. 14, 2016). Since the start of the 2004-05 season, the Bruins have compiled a 19-5 record against Arizona State (that figure spans 13 seasons).
Four UCLA players have been named to positional watch lists, as announced by the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame (each list is comprised of 10 players). Freshman Lonzo Ball is among 10 candidates for this season's Bob Cousy Point Guard of the Year Award. Senior Bryce Alford has been named to the midseason watch list for the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award. Freshman TJ Leaf is among 10 players selected to the Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year Award. Senior Thomas Welsh has been named to the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award Center of the Year watch list.
Bryce Alford ranks No. 7 on UCLA's all-time scoring list (1,802 career points). He scored a career-high 37 points, connecting on nine three-pointers, in UCLA's win at Colorado (Jan. 12). The senior guard has scored in double figures in 22 of 27 games and is currently shooting at a 52.0 percent clip from three-point range in Pac-12 games (52/100).
Isaac Hamilton scored a season-high 33 points, connecting on 9 of 14 three-pointers, in UCLA's 102-80 win over Arizona State (Jan. 19). Hamilton had 25 points in the first half in that victory. He has averaged 14.3 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.9 assists per game. Hamilton is one of three Bruins to have made at least 55 three-pointers this year.
Lonzo Ball, a national player of the year candidate, leads the nation in assists per game (7.6) and total assists (206). Averaging 15.4 points and 6.1 rebounds per game, Ball's 206 assists are the most in one season by a UCLA freshman (he surpassed Pooh Richardson's previous freshman record of 179 assists during a victory on Feb. 1).
TJ Leaf has scored at least 20 points in eight games. He ranks seventh in the Pac-12 in scoring (16.6 ppg) and fifth in rebounding (8.8 rpg), through Feb. 19. Leaf scored a season-high 32 points and had 14 rebounds in the win at Washington State (Feb. 1), connecting on 14 of 18 shots. He has totaled a team-leading 11 double-doubles.
Thomas Welsh (10.6 ppg, 8.7 rpg, 1.5 bpg) has made 30 of 32 free throw attempts. He made his first 28 free throw attempts after having ended the 2015-16 campaign with 16 consecutive made free throws. That established a new school record (44 straight), eclipsing Darren Collison's streak of 43 consecutive free throws in 2008-09.
Aaron Holiday has averaged 13.0 points and 4.4 assists, appearing in all 27 games off the bench. Holiday ranks fourth in the Pac-12 in three-point percentage (43.4%, 43/99) through Feb. 19. His 42.7 career percentage from three-point territory currently ranks fifth on UCLA's all-time list (minimum of 100 three-point attempts).
Ike Anigbogu, (pronounced EE-kay ahn-ee-BOH-goo) a 6-foot-10 forward/center from Corona, Calif., has averaged 4.6 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in 12.5 minutes per game off the bench. He has scored a season-high nine points in three games and has twice registered a season-high four blocks (shooting 55.8 percent from the field).
- G.G. Goloman has averaged 3.7 points and 2.5 rebounds per game, averaging 11.1 minutes off the bench for the Bruins. A 6-foot-10 forward from Körmend, Hungary, Goloman has totaled 20 blocks in 26 games (0.77 bpg). Goloman, who has shot 58.0 percent from the field, scored a career-high 12 points in a win over CSUN (Nov. 13).
UCLA has gone 14-1 in Pauley Pavilion this season. The Bruins' 11-game home win streak was snapped with a 96-85 loss to No. 14 Arizona. That had been the Bruins' longest home win streak since securing 15 straight wins in 2013-14, Steve Alford's first season in Westwood. UCLA last had an undefeated home record in 2006-07, going 16-0 in Pauley Pavilion. The Bruins have gone 72-13 in Pauley since the arena reopened Nov. 9, 2012, after an 18-month renovation.

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