No. 9 UCLA haunted by turnovers and other issues in win over Washington

Ben Bolch, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Basketball

LOS ANGELES — It didn’t seem like the sort of game that would involve any nervous moments for UCLA.

Dominating in every facet early, the Bruins looked as if they had walked over to the Wooden Center and were taking on a random collection of students that happened to be wearing the uniform of a Pac-12 rival.

But as the minutes passed, their once-massive lead dwindling, some old issues reemerged Thursday night against Washington. Ball movement ceased. Players stood around. Turnovers piled up. Everyone looked at one another, waiting for someone to do something.

UCLA’s offense bottomed out with one sequence in which David Singleton badly misfired on an NBA-range three-pointer before Jaylen Clark missed an easy put-back and the ball eventually trickled out of bounds off Adem Bona.

Having once led by as many as 18 points, the Bruins found themselves up only seven with 31/2 minutes to go. But Washington’s Keion Brooks Jr. airballed a three-pointer and the Bruins made enough free throws to avert a complete meltdown.

Ninth-ranked UCLA officially ended its two-game losing streak with a 70-61 victory over the Huskies at a tense Pauley Pavilion, even if it felt like more of the same for a team that couldn’t shake its offensive funk.


UCLA (18-4 overall, 9-2 Pac-12) committed a season-worst 18 turnovers, including five each by guards Tyger Campbell and Amari Bailey. Two of Campbell’s turnovers came on inbounds passes along the baseline off the hands of teammates.

“Eighteen turnovers, to me, is like 25 to other coaches, so beyond unacceptable,” Bruins coach Mick Cronin said.

Forward Jaime Jaquez Jr. had four turnovers, removing some luster from his double-double of 15 points and 10 rebounds.

“He’s way better than he played tonight,” Cronin said. “And if he’s not better than he played tonight we’re not going to win. ... Our supposed best two players (Campbell and Jaquez) got nine turnovers, and all of them unforced. At no point did they get trapped, so those two single-handedly let the other team back in the game with their carelessness with the ball.”


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