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In final away contest of season, UCLA women’s basketball drops to Stanford

Freshman guard Londynn Jones prepares to go up for a layup. Jones contributed 14 points of her own in Monday’s contest, leading the Bruins in scoring.
(Brandon Morquecho/Daily Bruin)

Women’s Basketball

No. 17 UCLA66
No. 3 Stanford71

By Leila Bivins

Feb. 20, 2023 8:43 p.m.

This post was updated Feb. 20 at 11:03 p.m.

The Bruins fell short in their attempt at vengeance against the Cardinal. 

 After losing to the Cardinal by 13 points on Jan. 13,  No. 17 UCLA women’s basketball (21-7, 10-6, Pac-12) was defeated by No. 3 Stanford (26-3, 14-2) on Monday evening in Maples Pavilion by a score of 71-66. Monday was the Bruins’ final away contest of the regular season.

The Bruins struggled to knock down their shots in the first quarter and finished eight points behind the Cardinal. The Bruins shot 29% from the field on 17 attempts. The Cardinal made more 3-point shots than the Bruins on significantly fewer attempts than the blue and gold. 

“They did a really good job of making shots hard for us,” said coach Cori Close. “Then they did a good job getting the ball inside to (forward Cameron) Brink and then to (guard) Haley Jones when in those pressurized moments.”

Despite the offensive struggles, UCLA remained competitive on the defensive end, picking up four steals in the quarter. The blue and gold forced six Stanford turnovers and only gave up one of its own. 

The Bruins and the Cardinal picked up two offensive rebounds each, but UCLA finished with just five rebounds in the quarter because of high percentage shooting from Stanford, which resulted in the Cardinal making seven of their 12 attempts from the field. 

After an early jumpshot by freshman guard Londynn Jones in the second quarter, UCLA went quiet on the offensive end for nearly six minutes, with its only scores coming from the charity stripe. Stanford took advantage of UCLA’s offensive struggles and ballooned the lead up to as much as 16 points behind an offensive splurge from Haley Jones, who finished with six points within the quarter. 

“The countless hours spent in that (shooting practice) helps a lot with confidence,” Londynn Jones said.

The blue and gold’s silence ended with an inside shot from freshman forward Christeen Iwuala. The remainder of UCLA’s offense came from Londynn Jones, who had a perfect shooting quarter hitting all three of her field goals. She finished with nine points in the quarter, the only Bruin going into the second half with double digits. 

“She (Londynn Jones) has something I can’t coach,” Close said. “That’s moxie, that’s confidence, that’s shiftiness, that she’s always believes the next shot’s going in.”

Senior guard Charisma Osborne jumps to shoot a layup. Osborne collected 11 points and seven rebounds for the Bruins on Monday. (Mattias de los Rios Rogers/Daily Bruin)

Senior guard Charisma Osborne caught fire to begin the second half, scoring the first eight points of the game and bringing UCLA within five points. UCLA continued to take control, going on a 13-4 scoring run to gain its first lead since the opening minutes of the game, with the score 47-46. 

“We all wanted to make a shift, and we knew we weren’t playing our best,” Osborne said. “I just wanted to come out and try to lead in that way and be the example that way.”

The Bruin defense only allowed two Cardinal players to score throughout the entire third frame and completely silenced Haley Jones – Stanford’s second-highest leading scorer across the season. 

“They made a mental shift,” Close said. “They decided to execute the game plan the way we talked about. We really didn’t execute our game plan, especially not offensively.”

On the other end of the court, UCLA picked up 11 points from second-chance opportunities behind six offensive rebounds throughout the quarter, entering the final frame with a one-point advantage by a score of 51-50.

The fourth quarter was a back-and-forth affair with three ties and the largest margin at six points. With one minute left in the game, the Cardinal held a lead of two points, and the Bruins regained possession of the ball after blocking a shot from Haley Jones. 

UCLA was unable to convert, and Stanford pushed the lead to five with a triage of free throws after shooting 23-25 from the free-throw line. UCLA was unable to score in the last seconds and ended with a five-point loss.

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Leila Bivins | Sports contributor
Bivins is currently a Sports contributor on the men's volleyball beat.
Bivins is currently a Sports contributor on the men's volleyball beat.
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