Jan. 7, 2006
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) - Jordan Farmar, sore ankle and all, was Mr. Clutch again for UCLA.
The sophomore guard scored twice in the final 34.6 seconds, the second one a driving layup with 3.6 seconds to go, to give the 17th-ranked Bruins a 61-60 victory over Arizona State on Saturday.
"He's just a clutch player. There's no more you can say about that," said teammate Arron Afflalo, who watched from the bench after injuring his hip with 1:58 to play. "When I saw him getting a little space going left, I knew he was going to make it. I had all the confidence in the world."
The Bruins (13-2, 3-1 Pac-10) escaped despite shooting only 36 percent (18-for-50) after a 62 percent night in their victory at No. 21 Arizona on Thursday. Farmar made four free throws in the final seconds to clinch Thursday's win.
Bryson Krueger's 3-pointer had given the Sun Devils (6-7, 0-4) a 60-59 lead with 12 seconds to go. UCLA got the ball to Farmar, who found an open lane to the hoop for the score.
"There was plenty of time left for us to make something happen, and I was just looking to penetrate again," Farmar said. "The same play, no one stopped me. I got a couple of bumps, but that's the weight room all summer paying off. I went through that and made the finish at the rim."
Kevin Kruger missed a desperation shot from midcourt at the buzzer.
The shaky victory gave the Bruins their first road sweep of the Arizona schools since 1997.
Afflalo scored 21 for UCLA, before getting hurt. Darren Collison made the free throw for Afflalo, completing a three-point play that put the Bruins ahead 57-54 with 1:58 remaining.
"I'll be fine," Afflalo said, "just a couple of bruises, something ice will take care of. It's just sore."
Kruger made one of two free throws, then Serge Angounou scored inside on a pass from Kruger to tie it at 57 with 57.4 seconds to play. Farmar broke the tie with an off-balance eight-footer in the lane with 34.6 seconds left before Krueger's 3-pointer.
Farmar has not been practicing because of the sore ankle, which was tightly taped for the game.
"That was just a tremendous gut-check win," UCLA coach Ben Howland said. "I thought we came out kind of flat. Part of that is fatigue, part of that is coming off a huge win in Tucson, and part of that is they came out and really took it to us early."
Angounou scored a career-high 23 points for the Sun Devils on 10-for-15 shooting. Kruger and Jeff Pendergraph added 11 apiece for Arizona State, which lost by one point for the second game in a row. USC beat the Sun Devils 66-65 on Thursday night.
"After the last ball game I was a little upset because I thought we made some late-game errors, boxing out, executing, things like that," Sun Devils coach Rob Evans said. "Tonight they did exactly what we asked them to do. Every possession we got good looks, we got good shots. They showed toughness in knocking down those shots. They showed toughness in going for loose balls. There are a lot of wet eyes in that locker room over there. That tells me they want to win, they want to win bad."
Afflalo was 4-for-14 shooting, 1-for-9 from 3-point range, but was 12-for-12 from the free throw line. UCLA made 24-of-29 free throws compared with Arizona State's 6-for-13.
Josh Shipp added 10 points for the Bruins, who were 1-for-15 on 3-pointers.
UCLA shot 24 percent (6-for-25) in the first half and trailed 29-23 at the break. It was the biggest lead for either team. The Bruins made three of their first four shots, then were 3-for-21 the rest of the half.
Arizona State lost to a ranked team for the 13th consecutive time. The Sun Devils' last victory over a ranked school was against No. 19 Memphis in the first round of the 2003 NCAA tournament.