Feb. 11, 2012
LOS ANGELES (AP) - California overcame early foul trouble by its big men and then withstood UCLA's late rally to move into sole possession of first in the Pac-12 with its 20th victory of the season.
"We were a little more patient in the second half," said coach Mike Montgomery, who earned his third 20-win season at Cal. "I thought we got some better shots. We were having a hard time. UCLA had some very good adjustments to what happened in the first game and we were thinking we could get the same stuff and we couldn't get the same stuff."
The Bears (20-6, 10-3) shot 52 percent from the floor in completing their first season sweep of the Bruins since 1993-94. The Bears beat Southern California 75-49 on Thursday night and have won all four regular-season games against the LA schools for the first time since 1958-59.
The Bears had been tied for first in the league with Washington, which plays at Oregon State on Sunday.
Jerime Anderson and Lazeric Jones scored 16 points each, and David Wear 10 points but just one rebound for the Bruins (14-11, 7-6), who lost at home for the first time in six games and had their two-game winning streak snapped.
UCLA twin brothers David and Travis Wear were in foul trouble in the second half, as was big man Joshua Smith, who finished with 10 and nine rebounds. The Bruins had a season-low seven assists.
"It was just a tough night," David Wear said. "I missed a lot of chippy shots around the hoop. Those are shots that we normally make and we should make."
The Bears led by nine points early in the second half before the Bruins cut it to four on a 3-pointer by David Wear, who had seven of their first 11 points of the half. Cal answered with the 15-2 run that extended its lead to 56-39 with 13:25 remaining. Cobbs, Crabbe and Kravish each scored four points and Kamp had a three-point play in the spurt.
"I was disappointed the way we were kind of hanging our head when we had the big deficit and I really got on them," UCLA coach Ben Howland said. "You never hang your head, you never quit, you keep fighting. I wanted our guys to play with more mental toughness."
Cal led by 17 again when UCLA outscored the Bears 12-2 to close to 66-59 with 3:03 left. Anderson had nine points, including a 3-pointer that got the crowd on its feet coming out of a timeout.
"Our defensive intensity went down and they also got some hype from the crowd," said Robert Thurman, who played 26 minutes because of the fouls on Kravish and Kamp. "The crowd was there for the rest of the game and we let our defense down. We kept our cool and we knew we had it under control."
The Bruins turned the ball over, then caught a break when Cobbs was called for an offensive foul as he soared in for a one-handed dunk that missed, landing him on the floor. But Anderson missed a 3 and moments later, Crabbe hit a 3 to keep the Bears ahead 70-59 with 1:08 remaining.
"We had some turnovers," Jones said. "They capitalized on them and that was pretty much it. We just got to be patient and keep our composure."
Cal shot 56 percent from the floor on its way to a 32-26 halftime lead that would have been larger had Anderson not hit a 3-pointer for UCLA in the final seconds.
The Bruins opened the game on a 13-8 run before the Bears put together a 13-2 spurt, including nine in a row, that gave them a 21-15 lead. Thurman had five points and Cobbs and Gutierrez had four each. UCLA was limited to just four field goals in the final 12:43.
UCLA played without backup center Anthony Stover, who had an MRI Friday showing a problem with the tendon in his left foot.