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Saturday, July 20, 2024

Dylan Andrews and Adem Bona ship UCLA to victory over rival USC Categorical Instances

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If it’s essential to your fan base, Mick Cronin mentioned this week, it higher be essential to you.

From a number of pockets inside Galen Middle, the UCLA followers loudly let their coach understand how a lot this meant.

Dozens seated behind the Bruins’ bench roared their approval within the closing minutes. An eight-clap broke out in a single part of the higher deck.

Sure, this was essential. For his or her crew and their coach.

In his first 5 seasons at UCLA, Cronin had taken his groups to a Closing 4 and two extra Candy 16s within the NCAA event. He’d received a Pac-12 regular-season championship.

Earlier than the Bruins’ 65-50 win Saturday evening, Cronin had by no means crushed USC on the Trojans’ residence courtroom, the one convention venue wherein he had did not win.

Dylan Andrews and Adem Bona ended that rivalry anxiousness with some gritty play, Andrews’ 20 factors to go along with lockdown protection on Boogie Ellis and Bona’s 10 factors, 10 rebounds and two blocks fueling the Bruins’ third win of their final 4 video games.

Bona walked off the courtroom with each arms raised in triumph after the Bruins (9/11 general, 4-5 Pac-12) constructed an 11-point halftime lead and by no means let the Trojans (8-12, 2-7) shut inside single digits within the second half, conserving the sellout crowd largely on mute.

After scuffling with USC’s zone early, UCLA toughened up, changing into the extra bodily and disciplined crew in outrebounding the Trojans by a 43-29 margin, together with 15 offensive rebounds that led to 17 second-chance factors.

Lazar Stefanovic’s three-pointer with 2:15 left gave the Bruins a 63-45 cushion and despatched streams of Trojans followers residence disenchanted of their first rivalry defeat on the Galen Middle since 2018. Stefanovic completed with 17 factors for the Bruins, who made seven of 16 three-pointers (43.8%) and improved to 3-0 this season when making not less than 40% of their pictures from past the arc.

USC guard Boogie Ellis, proper, shoots over UCLA guard Dylan Andrews throughout the first half Saturday.

(Ryan Solar / Related Press)

Ellis, described as a “Bruin killer” by Cronin for his annual highlights towards UCLA — together with a 31-point outburst on this identical courtroom final season — returned from the hamstring harm that had sidelined him the final three video games. Displaying no indicators of layoff, Ellis began and made two fast three-pointers in serving to the Trojans take an early lead.

In recent times, the Trojans had rotated by way of an annual checklist of heroes towards their rivals right here that included Drew Peterson (27 factors in 2022), Ethan Anderson (19 factors in 2021) and Jonah Mathews (game-winning step-back three-pointer in 2020).

That’s what tends to occur while you win seven of your final eight video games towards your rival at residence, together with 5 in a row.

Ellis couldn’t make a second look on the checklist, changing simply three of 10 pictures on his option to eight factors. Guard Oziyah Sellers scored 10 factors and was the one participant in double figures for the Trojans, who obtained blown out regardless of blocking 10 pictures and capturing 35.4% to UCLA’s 35.7%. USC star freshman Isaiah Collier remained out with the hand harm that’s anticipated to sideline him for just a few extra weeks.

The Bruins had been with out beginning freshman ahead Berke Buyuktuncel, who was out with a left hand harm. Freshman ahead Brandon Williams began in his place and missed all 5 pictures he took within the first half.

It was the primary time each groups had entered the rivalry sport with shedding information since Feb. 25, 2004, however they performed successful protection for a lot of the opening half. USC’s zone flustered UCLA because the Trojans obtained cease after cease whereas happening a 10-0 run to take a 20-13 lead.

The remainder of the half belonged to the Bruins. Cronin went with some uncommon lineups that included seldom-used huge males Devin Williams and Aday Mara, serving to UCLA finish the half on a 24-6 run.

The Bruins offset the Trojans’ seven blocks within the first half — together with one by Bronny James that led to a technical foul for following it up with smack discuss — with 10 offensive rebounds. These led to UCLA’s 11-0 benefit in second-chance factors and a 37-26 halftime lead.

The enjoyable was simply getting began for the Bruins and their coach.

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