Tenth-ranked UCLA women hold off Cal 74-70 in overtime
BERKELEY, Calif. — Michaela Onyenwere hit a go-ahead jumper in the paint with 25.7 seconds left and scored seven of her 22 points in overtime, and No. 10 UCLA held off California for a hard-fought 74-70 win Sunday to complete an impressive Bay Area sweep.
Jaelyn Brown’s 3-pointer for Cal tied it with 1:37 left and Charisma Osborne missed from the top of the arc before CJ West grabbed another timely rebound for the Golden Bears. But Cal couldn’t capitalize and a jump ball went UCLA’s way with 17.6 seconds left.
Osborne scored 17 points, Natalie Chou added 12 and Japreece Dean dished out seven assists for the Bruins (21-2, 10-2 Pac-12), who beat Cal for the sixth straight time in the series. Coming off a win Friday night at No. 6 Stanford, UCLA won its third straight since a loss at Arizona on Jan. 31.
Leilani McIntosh had 11 points, seven rebounds and six assists for Cal, which stayed in it until the end.
The Bruins had several chances to win in the closing seconds of regulation. Coach Cori Close called timeout to set up a final play with 5.3 seconds left, but Dean missed a 3 from the right wing at the buzzer.
West converted two free throws with 1:30 left in regulation for Cal that tied the game at 63, sending the crowd into a frenzy. Onyenwere missed an off-balance jumper.
It wasn’t easy and went down to the waning moments.
Brown scored 17 points to lead Cal (9-14, 1-11), which saw its home losing streak reach seven games but still had plenty of positives to take from this defeat.
“This will be Cal basketball and it will end up giving us Ws,” first-year coach Charmin Smith told fans after the final buzzer.
The Bears overcame poor shooting by bringing energy on both ends of the floor to fluster the Bruins, getting hands in faces on defense and crashing the offensive boards to create second opportunities to score. West blocked out with authority to pull down key rebounds, finishing with 12 and 11 points.
Onyenwere shot 8 for 17. The junior forward had 29 points and 10 rebounds in a 79-69 victory at No. 6 Stanford on Friday night that snapped the Cardinal’s 16-game home winning streak in Maples Pavilion. She came out firing again Sunday.
Both teams struggled out of halftime with Cal missing six straight shots during one stretch.
CRASHING THE BOARDS
Cal blocked out and went hard to the boards at every chance — grabbing 11 on the offensive end in the first half for a 27-16 rebounding advantage that helped the Bears stay within 36-32 at the break.
The Bears finished 54-39 on the boards overall and had many of the fans at Haas Pavilion on their feet down the stretch.
UCLA: Chou came to the bench with 2:14 left in OT after a hard hit to the face. … UCLA hit 5 of 7 3-point tries in the first quarter and wound up 7 for 17 from deep. … The Bruins are 9-2 on the road.
California: Cal missed its first four shots and began 0 for 5 on 3s and 3 for 11 overall, but the Golden Bears hung tough by holding a 12-8 rebounding advantage and converting 8 of 10 free throws in the opening quarter. … The Bears dropped to 1-8 this season against ranked opponents. … They will look back on six missed free throws (14 of 20).
UCLA: Hosts third-ranked Oregon on Friday night in a showdown of conference powers.
California: At Colorado on Friday having won two straight and four of the last five in Boulder.
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