Devils Fade in Second Half, Fall to Bruins

The words déjà vu are hardly music to one's ears when you're trying to snap an eight-game losing streak. Unfortunately for ASU, a familiar script played out tonight in L.A. The Sun Devils played a solid first half, just to come back after the break and score a mere 13 points. It was another missed opportunity for the maroon and gold as the Bruins prevailed 60-50.

Arizona State (6-12, 0-7 Pac-10) and its zone defense baffled UCLA (16-1, 5-1) in the first few minutes of the game. The Sun Devils jumped to a 17-6 lead taking advantage of the Bruins' cold 2-10 shooting to start the contest. In what was a sign of things to come, the home team tied the game at 29 apiece with a 23-12 run. Yet the visitors from Tempe didn't panic or relinquish the lead and closed out the half with a slim 37-34 edge.

It may have been predictable, but the flood gates of the UCLA offense opened full force in the second half. This time it was ASU's turn to start the period on a frigid note, making just one of their first ten field goal attempts, while the Bruins exploded on a 16-4 run to lead 50-41. A 5-0 Devil run brought the margin down to the four, but ultimately did nothing to jeopardize the Pac-10 leader from staying undefeated at home.

ASU was led by Christian Polk who scored 16 points. Allen Morill was the only other Sun Devil in double figures with 11, as he also had a team-high seven rebounds. Saddled with foul trouble Jeff Pendergraph managed just eight points and four rebounds. Jerren Shipp, who faced his brother Josh for the first time in a college game, chipped in with eight points as well. Derek Glasser's impressive contribution of seven assists was negated by his five turnovers. ASU was dominated by UCLA on the boards 32-22, and committed 16 turnovers. Darren Collison paced UCLA with 16 points.

Up next for the Sun Devils is a cross-town visit to USC on Saturday. The Trojans surprised Arizona tonight with an 80-73 win.

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