5-point play paces UCLA past Trojans
Collison led UCLA with 17points. Arron Afflalo made 3-of-11 field goals, his worst showing of the season, but went 9-of-10 from the free-throw line to finish with 16 points. Nick Young paced USC with 20 points while Gabe Pruitt chipped in 16. The Bruins trimmed a 10-point deficit to 30-29 at halftime, then spent the first 10 minutes after the break trying to stay close as Young and Stewart hit for key baskets as the Trojans extended their lead to 38-31. UCLA again trimmed USC’s lead to a point, this time 40-39 on Luc Richard Mbah a Moute’s steal and layup with 12:17 remaining. The Bruins then had a chance to take their first lead of the night, but Collison was called for a palming violation before hitting a runner in the lane, which did not count. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! The play gave the Bruins their first lead, triggered a 9-2 run and lifted No. 2 UCLA to a 70-65 victory against No. 19 USC on Wednesday at Pauley Pavilion. UCLA (21-2, 10-2 Pac 10) won its 18th straight home game and increased its lead in the Pacific-10 Conference to 1 1/2 games ahead of second-place Washington State. USC (18-7, 8-4) is two games back. LOS ANGELES – Never did a pair of missed shots work out so well for UCLA. Bruins wing Josh Shipp missed two close-range shots, but turned his third-chance bucket into an unfathomable five-point play in the latter part of the second half. The craziness of UCLA’s five-point trip downcourt, which was made possible only because Shipp missed his first two shots, added zest to an already intense game. Shipp grabbed the miss of his second shot and put in the third chance, getting fouled by Nick Young in the process to tie the score 52-52. To cap off the play, USC senior guard Lodrick Stewart slammed the ball down and received a technical foul. Arron Afflalo made the two technical free throws, Shipp added his free throw and suddenly the Bruins had their first lead, 55-52, with 4:25 to play. And the zaniness didn’t end there. UCLA built its lead to 59-54 in the final minute and had the ball, looking to take more time off the clock. As Etiwanda graduate Darren Collison dribbled near the midcourt line, backup center Alfred Aboya was being chased around the court by USC’s defenders. RouSean Cromwell, who was trying to foul Aboya, a poor free-throw shooter, eventually grabbed Aboya by the back of the jersey, but was called for an intentional foul. UCLA got two free throws (Aboya made one) and the ball back.