ANAHEIM, Calif. — Another cold start, another grind-it-out half for No. 14 UCLA (6-0).
The Bruins took a 35-34 lead into halftime against the Texas A&M Aggies in the finals of the Wooden Legacy tournament, behind the play of senior guard Isaac Hamilton.
Hamilton had 17 of UCLA’s first-half points on 7-of-9 shooting, including three from beyond the arc.
Freshman guard Lonzo Ball chipped in five assists and eight more points despite airballing early shots, including two from the 3-point range.
After starting the season with consecutive 100-point games, the Bruins failed to score more than 40 points for the second straight game.
Texas A&M came into the game looking to slow the game against the fast-paced UCLA offense, which averages over 100 points a game while limiting opponents to just 76.7 points a game.
The Aggies had the early 11-2 lead off the play of big man Tyler Davis, who had their first eight points. The center had the early mismatch inside against junior center Thomas Welsh, but the Bruins chipped away at the lead before freshman center Ike Anigbogu made the go-ahead jumper.
UCLA narrowly led Texas A&M in rebounds, assists and points, but superior interior play and seven turnovers – including three from Ball – kept the Aggies within striking distance.