March 3, 2012
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Lazeric Jones scored 20 points, twice hitting go-ahead baskets in the final 8:39, and UCLA defeated Washington 75-69 on Saturday to prevent the Huskies from clinching the Pac-12 regular-season title outright.
"That was a great win to finish the last game at the Sports Arena and for our seniors," said UCLA Head Coach Ben Howland. "I was so happy for all of them. It was fitting for Zeke (Lazeric Jones) to have an opportunity to ice the game at the line, and he did so calmly. We showed lots of moxie and poise, falling down early and fighting back. We never got rattled and kept believing. I thought this was Tyler Lamb's best game. He was just fantastic, penetrating the zone, jump-stopping and playing great defense on Ross, especially in the last 10 minutes. Zeke was also fantastic, knocking down jump shots and making plays for others. Travis Wear also had a good game with a double-double. It was a good overall team victory and gives us good momentum going into the Pac-12 Tournament."
Said Jones, "We went out there and got stops. We showed a lot of heart and gave it our all. Hopefully, this game will give us momentum going into the conference tournament. We've been there all year, hopefully, this is a turning point for us."
C.J. Wilcox scored 22 points and Terrence Ross added 14 for the Huskies (21-9, 14-4). The loss allows second-place California to grab a share of the league title with a win at Stanford on Sunday.
California also would earn the league tournament's top seed by virtue of a tiebreak because the Golden Bears beat the Huskies in their only regular-season meeting.
"[It's a] tough way to lose," said Washington Head Coach Lorenzo Romar. "They have been playing good basketball, UCLA has. I thought our guys did a good job today. The difference in the game was in the second half; they scored 11 points off of our turnovers and the majority of those were unforced. That's the difference in the game. The game was a two-point game right down the stretch near the end. We just didn't do a good enough job of taking care of the basketball."