Feb. 3, 2012
The Bruins (11-10, 6-4 Pac-12) complete their home stand on Saturday afternoon, squaring off with Washington State (4-6 10-12), at 2 p.m. on Dads and Daughters Day. Free video, audio and Gametracker will be available at UCLABruins.com.
UCLA is coming off a third straight dramatic win in a row, having rallied from a seven-point deficit in the last 49 seconds on Thursday night to win in overtime against Washington, 79-73 in the Wooden Center.
UCLA has outscored its last three opponents by a combined 23-3 to end regulation play (10-3 UW, 4-0 Col., 9-0 Utah), while matching its longest win streak of the season in the process.
Against Washington, UCLA trailed 63-56 with 49 seconds remaining in regulation. Senior Rebekah Gardner cut it to 63-58 with a basket (43 seconds). After a missed UW free throw attempt, Thea Lemberger converted a pair of chances from the line (0:32) to make it 63-60. Washington made two free throws for a five-point lead with 29 seconds to play. Markel Walker was then fouled after an offensive rebound and netted both attempts from the line (0:19) to make it 65-62. UCLA's press forced a UW turnover and Gardner's layup (0:14) narrowed the deficit to one-point. The Huskies made one of two free throws (0:12). Gardner grabbed the rebound and her driving layin with two seconds on the clock tied the game at 66.
The Bruins rallied for a 62-54 overtime win at Colorado on Jan. 29. UCLA was down by four with two minutes left in regulation and tied it up at 46 on baskets by Lemberger (1:54) and Gardner (0:14). Junior Markel Walker had six of her career-high matching 24 points in overtime. She added 10 rebounds for her fifth double-double of the season.
At Utah (Jan. 26), the Bruins captured a 65-60 victory. Trailing by nine (52-43) with 6:54 to play, the Bruins went on a 22-8 run to end the game. UCLA shot 57.7 (15-26) percent in the second half and forced Utah into seven turnovers in the final seven minutes, scoring on six of the ensuing possessions.Junior Mariah Williams led the Bruins with a career high in points (21).
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Rebekah Gardner recorded her ninth straight game with double figures in points, with 17 against Washington on Feb. 2. She had 17 at Colorado (Jan. 29) and totaled 15 at Utah (Jan. 26). The team leader in steals also matched a career high with five thefts in that contest.
Gardner leads the Bruins with 15.7 points per game and 42 steals (16 in last five contests), is second with 19 three-pointers and third with 6.6 rebounds per game. The Bruins' lone senior and only player to start all 21 games has led the team in scoring 10 times and has three double-doubles. She has upped her career points total to 954. Her 81 three-point shots rank tied for 10th on the all-time UCLA list with Noelle Quinn and Erica Gomez.
She totaled 22 points (sixth 20-point game of the year) and a career-high 15 rebounds (nine offensive) against Oregon on Jan. 21. She added a personal-best six assists. On Jan. 19 versus Oregon State, Gardner notched 19 points, eight rebounds and four steals. She had 20 against USC (Jan. 14), 16 points and eight rebounds at Arizona State (Jan. 7), 12 points and eight boards at Arizona (Jan. 5) and 17 points with six rebounds versus Stanford (Dec. 31).
Gardner has produced at least eight points in all 21 games, at least one steal in 19 of 21 contests (2+ on 13 occasions) and is first on the squad with 17 double-figure scoring games (38 career). She netted a career-high 24 against Tennessee on 9-of-18 shooting and 5-of-9 from beyond the arc. She also had 20 points versus San Diego State and a pair of double-doubles with 21 points and 10 rebounds against both Tennessee Tech and Colgate. She also has at least five boards in 13 games, including eight of the last 10.
Markel Walker has produced double figures in rebounds in eight straight contests after bringing down 14 against Washington to go with 16 points (sixth double double of year and 13th of career) and seven assists. She had 10 and a game-high 24 points at Colorado. (Jan. 29). Walker had 10 rebounds and14 points at Utah (Jan. 26). She has climbed into 18th place on the all-time UCLA rebound list.
Walker, who grabbed 12 rebounds with three points against Oregon, had a career-best 18 rebounds against Oregon State and was one assist shy of a triple-double, adding a personal-high nine assists with 16 points. During her double-figure rebounding streak, Walker had 14 with four points and five assists against USC, 13 with 15 points, five assists at Arizona State and 12 with 12 points versus Arizona. Of her 149 rebounds, 62 have come on the offensive end, as she is first on the team with 10.6 rpg (at least six in every game), third with 12.9 ppg, third with 54 assists and second with 32 steals. Walker has scored in double figures in 12 of 14 contests and has a steal in every game (2+ on 11 occasions), producing a season high against California (Dec. 29) with four steals and adding 18 points. She has at least four assists in five of her last seven and on eight occasions this year.
Thea Lemberger is another of a Bruin quartet that is averaging double figures in points, coming in at 12.4 ppg, which is fourth on the club. She is also first on the team with 31 three-pointers and second with 60 assists and 15 double-figure scoring games. The sophomore scored 15, all after halftime, in the win over Washington (Feb. 2). Lemberger scored 13 points at Colorado. She had 13 points and two three-pointers, tying a career high with six assists at Utah. On the last homestand, she had 18 points and made a career-best four three-pointers against Oregon after recording nine points versus Oregon State. The sophomore is averaging 14.6 ppg during Pac-12 play, producing seven double-figure games, including two with over 20. She had 22 at Arizona State, making 9-of-12 from the field and 3-of-4 from beyond the arc. Lemberger went for a career-high 26 against California (7-of-11 fg, 3-of-6 3pt, 9-of-10 ft) and also added a 17-point effort with five assists at Arizona. Lemberger had a career-best six assists against Tennessee and has at least four helpers in nine contests. Beyond the arc, she has at least one trey in 16 of her 21 contests, including three against Washington (Feb. 2) and at Temple (Dec. 20).
Mariah Williams registered 11 points against Washington on a perfect shooting night (4-4 fg, 3-3 ft, 3-3 3pt.). Her back-to-back baskets in the overtime period lifted the Bruins to a six-point lead with 1:43 to play. She scored four at Colorado. At Utah, she produced a career-high 21 points, going 8-of-14 from the field and 3-of-4 from beyond the arc in a career-high 37 minutes. Williams has started 17 straight games (19 total) and leads the squad with 61assists to go with 5.0 ppg and 25 steals, which is third on the club. The junior had eight points on 4-of-6 shooting, four rebounds and three steals against USC. She tied a season high with six assists at Arizona State and has produced at least four assists in eight contests this season. The junior also had six assists against McNeese State. Williams has two other contests with at least 10 points, posting 13 at LMU and 11 versus San Diego State. Williams was 6-of-10 from the floor against the Lions and went 7-of-8 from the charity stripe versus the Aztecs. Williams has a steal in eight of her last 12 games (13 total), recording a season-best three against LMU and California.
Corinne Costa has played 20-plus minutes in 12 straight games and is averaging 7.1 ppg, 5.4 rpg, 2.6 blocks per game over her last eight contests. Her 42 blocked shots this year rank second on the Bruins all-time season list and are the most by a UCLA player since the 1980-81 season (Necie Thompson-53).
Costa scored a career-best 13 points in the win over Washington (Feb. 2) and matched her own school record total of seven blocked shots. She pulled down a career-best 10 rebounds at Colorado. She set a career high with 10 points (5-of-9 fg) against Oregon, to go with four blocks. She had two points, four boards and a block at Utah. The sophomore put up eight points and six rebounds versus Oregon State, six points and five rebounds against USC, six points and four boards at Arizona State and eight points and seven rebounds at Arizona. The team leader in blocks with 42 is averaging 4.1 ppg and 4.2 rpg on the year. Costa set a UCLA single-game record with seven blocks against California, which broke Natalie Williams' record of six set on March 6, 1992 against Arizona. She has at least one block in 19 of 21 games (2+ eight times) and at least one in 12 straight (23 total).
Rhema Gardner collected five boards in the win over Washington. She pulled down seven rebounds at Colorado. Gardner had her second-highest scoring output of the season against Oregon State, posting nine points to go with four assists and a career-high three steals. Gardner, who had two rebounds at Utah, is averaging 3.8 ppg and 4.0 rpg this season, adding 12 blocks, which is second on the squad. The sophomore has at least five rebounds in seven games, recording eight at Arizona State. Her career best in rebounds came against Colgate (10). Gardner's personal high in points happened versus McNeese State when the sophomore poured in 18 on 5-of-7 shooting and 7-of-10 from the free throw line. Gardner has four other games with at least five points, including nine against San Diego State. Defensively, she has a block in nine games, including three against Cal and two versus USC.
Kacy Swain is averaging 2.6 ppg and 1.7 rpg in 18 contests. She scored six points in the win over Washington and had one board at Colorado. The freshman, who did not play at Utah because of a violation of team rules, recorded four points, four rebounds (tied season high) and a block against Oregon State and two points, two boards versus Oregon. In her third start of the year, Swain recorded two rebounds in 16 minutes against USC. She had four points and three rebounds at Arizona. During the opening weekend of Pac-12 play, she had two blocks against Cal and two points and a board in 14 minutes of action versus Stanford. The freshman's season best in points came against Tennessee Tech (9). Swain pulled down a season-high four rebounds against West Virginia on Nov. 25.
Freshman walk-on Madeline Brooks has seen action in six games. She played a career-high 16 minutes against Oregon, knocking down a three-pointer and grabbing a rebound. She made her collegiate debut against Colgate, playing four minutes and recording one offensive rebound. She had two points at Loyola Marymount and played the final minute of the Dec. 31 game against Stanford.
Atonye Nyingifa, who had 14.7 ppg, 8.9 rpg, a 45.7 shooting percentage, 11 blocks and 18 steals in nine games, tore her right ACL against Tennessee (Dec. 17) and will miss the remainder of the season. The redshirt junior had seven double-figure scoring contests and five double-doubles. Nyingifa poured in a career-best 28 and tied a personal high with 14 rebounds against LMU.
Moriah Faulk, tore her left ACL against Arizona State (Jan. 7) and will miss the rest of the year. The freshman came off the bench in 15 contests, averaging 5.7 ppg and 15 three-pointers. She had multiple treys in five games, including a perfect 3-for-3 at Loyola Marymount when she had a season-best 11 points, six rebounds and four steals in just 14 minutes. Faulk also had double-figure games with 10 against both McNeese State and Baylor.
POINTS OF INTEREST
UCLA set a single-game school record with 13 blocks against California on Dec. 29, which broke the previous mark of 12 on Dec. 4, 1980 against Texas A&M ... UCLA is second in turnover margin (+2.7), third in three-point fg % defense (.259), third in blocks (4.5), fourth in assist/turnover margin (0.9) in league contests ... individually, Rebekah Gardner is fifth in conference games in ppg at 16.3, Thea Lemberger is sixth (14.6) and Markel Walker is ninth (13.3). Walker is second with 11.8 rpg in Pac-12 contests, first in offensive rpg (4.6), tied for fourth in steals (2.4) and fourth in apg (4.1), while Corinne Costa is third with 2.9 bpg ... UCLA is 9-1 when leading at the half, with the only loss coming at Arizona ... The Bruins have won the last three games (UW, at Colorado, at Utah) when trailing at the five minute mark, their first such wins this season (now 3-8).
BRUINS IN THE PAC-12
Rankings through Feb. 2
(Markel Walker will become eligible once she has played in 75 percent of UCLA's games)
Rebekah Gardner: Scoring (5th, 15.7); Minutes Played (4th, 34.3); Steals (7th, 2.0); Free Throw % (6th, .735); Offensive Rebounds (8th, 2.9); Rebounding (18th, 6.6)
Thea Lemberger: Minutes Played (7th, 34.0); 3-Point FG Pct (13th, .330); 3-Point FG Made (T8th, 1.5); Free Throw % (12th, .681); Scoring (12th, 12.4); Assists (T14th, 2.9)
Mariah Williams: Assists (13th, 2.9)
Corinne Costa: Blocked Shots (3rd, 2.0)
Team: 3-Point FG Pct Defense (2nd, .277); Offensive Rebounds (4th, 14.8); Turnover Margin (3rd, +1.8); Free Throw Percentage (6th, .671); Steals (5th, 8.6)
ABOUT WASHINGTON STATE
WSU is coming off of a 67-62 loss at USC on Thursday night. Jazmine Perkins led the Cougs with 17 points and 10 boards. WSU recorded a home split with the Arizona schools last week (bested Arizona 78-68 as five players scored double figures; ASU topped Washington State 63-46).
WSU senior guard Jazmine Perkins leads the Pac-12 in steals (2.8/g). She tops the Cougars in scoring (9.3) and rebounding (7.7) and had 13 points and 12 boards in the win over Arizona. In conference games only, WSU leads the Pac-12 in turnover margin at +4.9 (13.5 WSU to / 18.4 oppt. to).
June Daugherty is in her fifth season as the head coach of Washington State. The Bruins have won the last 22 games played in the series and own a record of 25-0 in the contests played at UCLA.