UW sweeps LA schools

Once again buoyed by double-digit efforts from their three leading scorers and 16 more from their true freshman point guard, Washington rode the ups and downs of a physical bruising game with UCLA and came out on top with a 70-67 win Saturday in Seattle.

"Who is the most physical team in the Pac-10? UCLA has got to be it, hands-down," Washington Head Coach Lorenzo Romar said. "It was a street-fight for 40 minutes, but that's the way UCLA makes it. That's why they've won so much. But we came right back at them, I give our guys a lot of credit."

"Credit the University of Washington," added UCLA Head Coach Ben Howland. "They applied a lot of pressure. That was a very good team we played today. I think they'll do some damage in the NCAA tournament."

The Huskies (18-5, 7-5) also beat USC on Thursday, sweeping the four-game series with the LA schools for the first time since 1987. The win over UCLA also marked Washington's third-straight win over the Bruins, the first time that has happened in nearly 55 years.

Getting the sweep also helped put a band-aid on their NCAA tournament aspirations, especially after losing three-straight on the road. "They are a quality team, they deserve to be in the NCAA tournament," said UCLA guard Jordan Farmar after the game.

Brandon Roy once again led the charge with 20 points, but nearly as important were the seven assists he dished out at key times to open teammates. Bobby Jones and Jamaal Williams also added ten points each, and frosh Justin Dentmon - hampered by an ankle injury late in the game, came up with 16 points, his final two with just 8.1 seconds left to give Washington their final margin of victory.

"People were very critical of Justin after the Stanford game, but he's bounced back with three very, very good performances. He has great character. And you have to let them play through their mistakes.

But it wasn't Dentmon that made a key mistake this game, it was the other frosh - Brockman. With the Huskies breaking UCLA's press, the ball ended up in Brockman's hands at the corner of UW's offensive end. Instead of just holding onto the ball and waiting for a sure Bruin foul, he tried to get it back to a more-reliable free-throw shooter - Roy. Instead, the Bruins stole the pass and were able to get true frosh guard Darren Collison in a situation where a layin would tie the game with only 9.2 seconds left. Instead Dentmon fouled Collison, and Collison was only able to make one of two shots to give Washington life.

After Dentmon's two free-throws put the Huskies up three and UCLA with the ball going down the court, it appeared that there might be a chance for a Stanford-redux. But a Farmar three attempt was partially blocked by Roy, and Brockman was able to clear up the mess, passing to Ryan Appleby to close out the clock. Farmar was clearly not on his game at all Saturday, due mostly to two sore ankles that forced him to miss his fair share of practice during the week.

"When we needed him (Roy) to defend and put the clamps down on the best playmaker in the league (Farmar) - he stepped up. For Farmar to go 2-13 and have seven turnovers, you have to give Brandon a lot of credit," Romar said of Roy's all-around performance.

"Jordan had some open looks, but you're going to have games like that," added Howland.

UCLA (20-5, 10-3) was led by the 15 points of Alfred Aboya, an inside force that the Huskies just could not contain in the second half. Farmar added 13 and Luc Richard Mbah a Moute came up with 11 points and nine rebounds for the Bruins in a losing effort. Ryan Hollins finished with seven points and also had nine boards.

The game was a bruiser right from the start, as a call was made every thirty seconds for basically the entire first half. 54 total fouls were tallied, and three players ended up fouling out; Cedric Bozeman and Ryan Hollins for UCLA and Jamaal Williams for Washington. "It's tough," Farmar said after the game about the number of fouls called. "It's hard to get into a rhythm. That's just the road in the Pac-10, playing a school as good as the Huskies. We were trying to be physical all game long, but it's hard to do that when they are at the free-throw line all the time."

Washington shot 82.4 percent from the line (28-34), out-scoring UCLA on the stripe by 9.

Williams may have been asked to leave the game by the referees, but he still was able to leave an imprint on the final result. He put up a tough shot off the glass to give Washington a four-point lead and then came up from behind Farmar and stymied him in the paint, blocking the ball from up top as the UCLA point guard was trying desperately to draw contact and go to the line.

Hollins' exit was a very damaging one for UCLA, as he fouled out with nearly 12 minutes to go in the game. Up to that point, the Bruins had dominated Washington inside, and had their way all game long. Overall, UCLA out-rebounded Washington 34-26. "We haven't got out-rebounded like that for a long time. They had their way with us."

And when Hollins left, the Bruins immediately went on a 6-0 run and took their first lead of the game since the five-minute mark of the first-half on a Michael Roll layin. From there on out, it was a see-saw battle, with neither team able to widen a lead larger than four points.

At one point in the first half, UCLA Head Coach Ben Howland walked onto the court and down on UCLA's offensive end, asking for a timeout to get Hollins out of the game because he started to go after the Huskies' Appleby as a number of players crashed to the floor. The UW-partisan crowd wanted a technical foul to be assessed on Howland, but the referees decided against it. In hindsight, it was a timeout Howland would have wanted back. Howland decided to call his last one with 3:56 left in the game, rather than wait until the mandatory under-four minute television timeout.

"Ryan lost his control and started to go after Appleby and that hurt us right there. I was so irate with him because he's a senior who is playing his best game ever and still fouls out after playing only 17 minutes because he was going after guys. And the refs showed a lot of restraint in not t'ing me up and also showed great restraint in not t'ing him (Rollins)."
Points: Roy 20, Dentmon 16, Jones 10, Williams 10, Brockman 7, Burmeister 3, Appleby 3, Jensen 1
Rebounds: Brockman 5, Roy 4, Dentmon 4, TEAM 4, Jones 3, Williams 3, Appleby 2, Jensen 1
Assists: Roy 7, Jones 2, Dentmon 2, Williams 1
Steals: Jones 4, Roy 1, Dentmon 1, Appleby 1
Blocks: Roy 2, Williams 1

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