California 76, UCLA 62
BERKELEY, Calif. (AP)—Leon Powe had 19 points and 14 rebounds and California won consecutive games for the first time this season, defeating UCLA 76-62 on Saturday.
Amit Tamir added 19 points for the Golden Bears, who beat the Bruins for the fourth straight time in Berkeley before a sellout crowd of 11,877—the first time Cal (8-8, 4-3 Pac-10) sold out Haas Pavilion this season.
Dijon Thompson scored 17 points for UCLA (9-6, 5-3 Pac-10), whose only previous conference losses had been to No. 2 Stanford and 14th-ranked Arizona. Trevor Ariza added 11 points and eight rebounds and T.J. Cummings 12 points and six boards.
Powe, Cal’s leading scorer and rebounder who has eight double-doubles, took over the game in crunch time, scoring 12 points in the second half. He had a key putback with 6:15 left and another basket moments later, then swished a long jumper with 2:43 remaining. Powe took the ball hard to the hoop to draw fouls late in the game and went 7-of-16 from the free throw line.
The Bears, who start three freshmen and a sophomore and have had trouble establishing any consistency, beat USC 63-62 on Thursday. They were 22-of-38 at the line Saturday and shot 45.3 percent from the field.
Cal players wore small black patches on the front of their uniforms with “AL 31” in memory of women’s basketball player Alisa Lewis, who died Monday from bacterial meningitis, an infection of the covering of the brain and spinal cord.
Ayinde Ubaka broke a 38-all tie on a four-point play with 13:26 left after UCLA’s Ryan Hollins pushed him down for the foul on his 3-pointer from the wing. It was a game of three-point plays, and Ubaka had another with 8:33 to go that gave Cal a 51-47 lead. He finished with 13 points.
UCLA’s 7-foot center Michael Fey began the game guarding Powe, who wore a bulky brace on his troublesome left knee, but the Bruins rotated several players on the talented freshman and double-teamed him at times.
Everything went Cal’s way early—even a jump ball call that was changed to a Cal possession after a huddle by the officials. The Bears started 5-for-7 from the field, including 4-of-4 from 3-point range, to take a 14-2 lead 3:55 into the game.
The Bruins didn’t lead until Josiah Johnson made one free throw with .2 seconds left before halftime to give UCLA a 31-30 lead.