Friday, November 16

Men’s basketball scores wire-to-wire 114-77 win over Long Beach


Freshman guard Lonzo Ball finished with a double-double 20 points and 11 assists in 20 minutes of play. The Bruins shot 12-of-20 from beyond the arc and 64 percent overall for their fourth straight win. (Hannah Ye/Daily Bruin senior staff)

Freshman guard Lonzo Ball finished with a double-double 20 points and 11 assists in 20 minutes of play. The Bruins shot 12-of-20 from beyond the arc and 64 percent overall for their fourth straight win. (Hannah Ye/Daily Bruin senior staff)


This post was updated Nov. 20 at 10:05 p.m.

The only question for most of the night was just how many points UCLA would put up on the scoreboard.

The Bruins reached 100 with 8:01 still left in the game. When it was all said and done, No. 16 UCLA (4-0) handed Long Beach State (1-4) a 114-77 wire-to-wire loss.

The Bruins ran out to a quick 19-5 lead before cruising for the rest of the night, but the game had a little bit of everything.

Two monster alley-oop finishes from freshman guard Lonzo Ball that could be appearing on SportsCenter very soon. Lights-out shooting from downtown as UCLA hit 12 3s on 60 percent shooting. And to add insult to injury, sophomore guard Aaron Holiday threw the ball off the backboard for Ball to jam it home with 7:10 still left in the game.

“He might be number one, two and three (on SportsCenter Top 10 plays of the night),” said senior guard Bryce Alford. “It’s really fun the way we’re playing basketball.”

[Related: Bryce Alford – The Shot Caller.]

Everyone joined in on the fun with six Bruins scoring in double-figure. Freshman forward TJ Leaf put up a game-high 21 points and nine rebounds. Alford added in 15 points on a blistering 5-for-6 from the 3-point line. Senior guard Isaac Hamilton chipped in 17 points and Holiday finished with 16 points on 70 percent shooting.

The ball movement kept the offense running and humming all night – 27 assists on 46 field goals against just 11 turnovers.

“When we’re sharing the ball and you’re working at a common goal on both ends, it really makes everybody look good,” said coach Steve Alford. “I think that’s happening. We got a lot of guys playing well and a lot of guys looking good because we’re sharing it.”

As a whole, UCLA shot 65.7 percent from the field, and Long Beach State just couldn’t keep up with its 46.6 percent clip while coughing up 23 turnovers.

Ball set the tone early, handing out three assists on the first three Bruin field goals of the game. He finished with 20 points and 11 assists. The 20 points were a career high, and the 11 assists tied the 11 he set in his first game as a Bruin.

Current Miami Heat team president Pat Riley attended the game and was jotting notes, no doubt scouting for the next NBA draft – his team could have a top lottery pick.

And while Ball said he didn’t realize that Riley was at the game tonight, he had a simple message for the NBA legend:

“Hopefully he enjoyed the show.”

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