Dec. 19, 2012
The Bruins matched their longest winning streak of the year after having won their first three contests to open the season.
"We moved the ball and shared it very well tonight," head coach Ben Howland said. "We took a couple of quick shots that fueled their comeback to trim it to seven, and then we made some shots to push the lead to 21."
Tuesday night's victory marked the first game in which at least two UCLA players scored 20 or more points since Dec. 29, 2010, when Malcolm Lee and Reeves Nelson each tallied 21 points for the Bruins in a win over Washington State.
Larry Drew II added 14 points and nine assists, pushing his season assist turnover ratio to 5.0. David Wear rounded out UCLA's list of double-figure scorers, recording 11 points.
"It was a very good start for the game," Howland said. "[Long Beach State] has a very talented team, but I was really pleased with Larry Drew. That was his best game of his UCLA career. I was really pleased with his play. When he is playing like that defensively, it makes our team play better defense."
Long Beach State's Dan Jennings, a West Virginia transfer, scored a career-high 27 points for the 49ers (4-7). James Ennis added 20 points and Peter Pappageorge registered 10 points.
Jennings and Ennis carried the 49ers in the second half despite being two of four players in foul trouble. They closed within seven points early in the half on a pair of free throws by Ennis. His 3-pointer drew Long Beach to 66-59 before the Bruins began pulling away.
UCLA got balanced scoring in a 15-5 run that extended its lead to 81-64. Adams, Muhammad and Drew II each hit 3-pointers, while Muhammad had four more points in the spurt.
Freshmen Adams and Muhammad have been UCLA's top scorers in nine of their 11 games. Muhammad was coming off a career-high 25 points against Prairie View A&M.
"Defensively, it was just about the mindset to get down," Muhammad said. "Our last three wins really came from that effort. We're aggressive on offense, but when we get stops on defense, it allows us to push even more."
The Bruins led by 12 points in the first half, when they shot 54 percent. Adams scored 16 points, going 5 of 7 from the field.
Edgar Garibay, who is one of four Division I transfers for the 49ers, saw his first playing time of the season. The Loyola Marymount transfer was scoreless after becoming eligible when his grades for the first semester were posted in time for the game.
UCLA returns to action against Fresno State (5-6) on Saturday, Dec. 22, in New Pauley Pavilion. Game time is 8 p.m. Saturday's contest will be televised by Pac-12 Networks.
Game Notes: UCLA now leads the all-time series against Long Beach State, 12-1 ... Larry Drew II had nine assists and one turnover for the second consecutive game ... Drew II has increased his season totals to 92 assists and 18 turnovers (5.06 assist turnover ratio) ... Drew II also had a season-high 14 points ... Hall of Famers Jerry West and Oscar Robertson sat together on the baseline during Tuesday night's game in New Pauley Pavilion.