Stanford 78, UCLA 65
STANFORD, Calif. (AP)—Chris Hernandez scored eight of his career-high 37 points in the final 3 1/2 minutes while carrying Stanford to its sixth straight victory over UCLA, 78-65 on Sunday.
Hernandez had the best game of his three seasons at Stanford (15-9, 9-5 Pac-10), hitting five 3-pointers and going 13-for-22 with several tough baskets during the Cardinal’s two lengthy runs spanning halftime. His accuracy and energy was the difference in Stanford’s third straight victory overall.
Matt Haryasz and Fred Washington scored 12 points apiece for Stanford, which finished up a home sweep of the Los Angeles schools and took a comfortable hold on third place in the conference standings, 1 1/2 games ahead of UCLA with a tiebreaker edge over the Bruins.
Dijon Thompson had 19 points and 11 rebounds for the Bruins (14-9, 8-7), who have lost to all three teams ahead of them in the conference standings over the past five games.
Freshman Jordan Farmar had 16 points and seven assists for UCLA, which had little of the offensive spark it showed in a win over California on Thursday, frequently settling for poor shots. Farmar struggled in his matchup with Hernandez, making seven turnovers and failing to stay with the Stanford junior on defense.
With leading scorer Dan Grunfeld out for the season with a torn knee ligament, Hernandez knows the Cardinal’s postseason success could depend on his ability to score while still playing his favorite role as Stanford’s best playmaker.
So Hernandez was aggressive and accurate from the start, scoring 22 points and hitting three 3-pointers on 8-for-13 shooting in the first half. Washington had five steals in the first half, and Stanford went into halftime on a 23-8 run.
Stanford then opened the second half on a 21-9 run, including six points from Haryasz. UCLA made a 17-5 run to cut Stanford’s lead to 10 points with 4:48 to play, but Hernandez made a layup and two free throws to exceed his previous career-high, set earlier this season in an overtime victory over San Francisco.
Hernandez capped his performance with a 3-pointer from two steps behind the line with 10 seconds left.
Former Stanford star Josh Childress, now a rookie with the Atlanta Hawks, watched from a seat next to new Cardinal football coach Walt Harris.