UCLA hits the road for the first time this season heading over to Las Vegas for the South Point Thanksgiving Shootout. First up is Kansas State.
After losing to UConn at home a few days ago, UCLA looks to pick themselves up starting with Kansas State. The teams have met three times in the past with UCLA coming out victorious all three times. The most recent meeting was almost 37 years ago in Los Angeles. The Bruins lead the series 3-0.
The biggest threat UCLA will face is the Kansas State defense. In four games, the Wildcats have recorded 30 blocked shots. That’s 7.5 blocks per game. Nine of the 10 players who have seen the court so far this season has at least one blocked shot. Last time around, the defense did UCLA in. Whether it was zone or man-to-man, UConn learned how to stop the Bruin offense. One of the keys was to shut down Jordin Canada. Despite her 15 points that game, they had her pinned down a majority of the game. With Canada blocked, the team struggled to find other options since they looked to Canada to do everything.
The team cannot rely on Canada to do everything. If she’s blocked, the Bruins need to find other players who can step up. With this being Canada’s last season, UCLA needs to work quickly to find another playmaker. A big possibility can be freshman Chantel Horvat. In five games, including the exhibition, Horvat has seen 90 minutes, 69 in the regular season. Coach Close has enough trust in the freshman that Horvat has become a constant player on the court in her few games in Westwood.
This is your UCLA Women’s Basketball vs. Kansas State open thread!