UCLA just too good

All season long UCLA has been a very good team. On Saturday UCLA looked like a great team. The Bruins shot 52.5% from the field and downed the Wildcats 81-66.

UCLA played like a team who wants to return to the national title game. They made all the tough shots, played hard nosed defense and seemed to want the win just a little bit more.

Against a program that has produced a long line of elite point guards, Darren Collison had a game that could rank up with any of the Wildcat greats. The sophomore scored 17 points and dished out a staggering 15 assists. He was 5-7 behind the arc and made a pair of well-defended threes as the shot clock expired that deflated the Wildcats.

His Arizona counterpart played pretty well. In his final game at McKale, Mustafa Shakur scored 17 points and dished six assists.

The Bruins came out of the gate hot. They scored the first six points of the game and led by as many as nine in the first half. The Cats clawed their way back in. They tied the game at 23 thanks to a 12-0 run that saw Shakur and Chase Budinger each score five points.

UCLA answered with a run of their own, scoring seven in a row.

Arizona seemed to have the momentum heading into the second half. The Wildcats scored the final seven points of the half and a Marcus Williams transistion lay-in cut the Bruin lead to one. Arizona had the ball to start the second half but turned it over. UCLA then scored 10 of the next 14 to give the Bruins a 45-38 lead.

On several occassions the Cats cut it to four but could get no closer.

Josh Shipp led all scorers with 24 points, while Arron Afflalo chipped in 15.

Jordan Hill just missed a double-double, scoring 11 points and pulling down nine rebounds. Williams scored 17, while grabbing nine rebounds as well.

Notes:
*For the first time in the Lute Olson era the Wildcats were swept in a conference homestand.

*Former Wildcats Luke Walton, Channing Frye and Richard Jefferson were all on hand.

*Wildcat signees Laval-Lucas Perry and Jamelle Horne were on campus making their official visits.

*Mustafa Shakur and Ivan Radenovic played their final games at McKale. They were honored after the game in a short ceremony. Interestingly enough, Kirk Walters was not honored as the staff really believes he will be granted an additional year of eligibility by the NCAA.

*For the second straight season the Cats wore their red road jerseys for the final home game and for the second straight season they lost.


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