UCLA traveled to the state of Washington to face the Washington Schools. With two conference wins already in the bag, Washington State was up first. It did not go as planned. Washington State beat UCLA, 82-73. Today, they face the University of Washington.
Against Washington State, the Bruins were shooting 3-for-11 in the first quarter. That’s only 27.3% compared to Wazzou which was 5-for-8 (62.5%). Despite these low numbers, somehow, UCLA continued to lead the Cougars at the half. In the third quarter, Monique Billings found her groove and had recorded another double-double by the end of the quarter. The Bruins led by only one point heading into the fourth quarter. That was when they saw the win escape from their hands. They could not stop freshman Chanelle Molina. She scored a career best of 33 points with seven assists and five rebounds. Considering how they played, the loss was not all too surprising.
Next, UCLA faces the University of Washington. Washington is going to be a difficult battle as the Huskies have yet to lose a game at home. Washington has only suffered two losses all season, one against Notre Dame and the other against Oregon State. In all their victories, Washington didn’t blowout their opponents, but they did win comfortably.
Keeping a small lead is not going to be enough for UCLA to win this game. That happened against Washington State. The “Fourth Quarter Problem” has plagued them all season long. They were outscored by Washington State in the final quarter 31-21. All season, the Bruins have been outscored by opponents by a total of over 40 points while they lead every other quarter. Those 31 points were the most any team has ever scored against them in any quarter. UCLA needs to be weary of the last quarter against Washington.
While defeats like this can happen all the time, it is all about how UCLA responds to it. Based on past games, the fourth quarter will be a big issue for the Bruins, but nothing that can’t be fixed. It is still early in the conference and one loss won’t hurt them too bad. The key is to avoid piling losses up.
No. 7/9 UCLA Women’s Basketball (11-3, 2-1)
Opponent: #11/12 Washington (15-2, 3-1)
When: 2 PM PT, Sunday, January 8, 2017
Where: Alaska Airlines Arena, Seattle, WA
Live Stream: WatchESPN.com and the ESPN app
Live Stats: Washington StatBroadcast