Los Angeles, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Arizona was tested on the road, but
timely free throws and defensive stops helped the No. 1 Wildcats hold off
UCLA, 79-75, to match the best start in program history.
Nick Johnson netted a game-high 22 points for Arizona (16-0, 3-0 Pac-12),
which nearly squandered a 13-point lead in the final minutes at
Pauley Pavilion. UCLA went in front 70-69 with 1:44 remaining before
Johnson's floater re-established the Wildcats' edge. The nation's top team
made 8-of-10 from the charity stripe down the stretch to seal the outcome.
Kaleb Tarczewski tallied 16 points and eight rebounds in the triumph for the
unbeaten Wildcats, who are off to their best start since the 1931-32 season.
Gabe York added 12 points off the bench, Aaron Gordon donated 10 and T.J.
McConnell tallied eight points, seven assists and seven rebounds.
Kyle Anderson paced UCLA (12-3, 1-1) with 16 points, 11 rebounds and six
assists in the setback. Jordan Adams and Bryce Alford scored 12 points apiece
while Tony Parker contributed 10 off the bench. The Bruins saw their three-
game winning streak come to an end.
The Wildcats led 42-38 at halftime and opened the second half with two quick
buckets for an eight-point margin. A 6-0 run kept the Bruins close before
Johnson's trey ignited a 10-2 Arizona surge.
Johnson's explosive righty slam gave the Wildcats their largest lead at 68-55
with 6:16 remaining before UCLA came storming back. Alford followed Anderson's
jumper with a 3-pointer and a pair of free throws to cut the lead to six
points at the final media timeout.
Anderson made 3-of-4 from the stripe out of the break and Adams potted a
triple to cap the 13-0 run with 2:23 on the clock.
Brandon Ashley then split a pair at the line before Alford gave UCLA its first
lead since late in the first half with two more foul shots.
Following Johnson's runner early in Arizona's next possession that put the
Wildcats back in front, Gordon padded the cushion with two at the line. After
Adams missed a corner 3 which would have re-tied the score, Tarczewski drew a
foul on Tony Parker and made 1-of-2 from the stripe to make it a two-
possession game with under a minute left.
On UCLA's next touch, Anderson drove to the foul line and put a pump fake on
Gordon, who didn't bite and forced one of the nation's best sophomores into a
The lead was 77-72 when Zach LaVine drilled an NBA-range 3-pointer with just
under 17 seconds to go, but York potted two free throws and LaVine's next 3
was off the mark.
The first half featured six ties and 10 lead changes. Arizona led by as many
as six points on separate occasions but failed to gain any real momentum.
Johnson broke a 36-all tie with a triple 1:39 before halftime. Tony Parker
responded with a pair of free throws, but York's 3 resulted in the four-point
The win snapped Arizona's three-game losing streak to the Bruins ... UCLA
still leads the all-time series 52-38 ... Arizona outscored UCLA 42-22 in the
paint ... Arizona won the rebounding margin 37-36, and has outrebounded its
opponent in all 16 games this season ... The Wildcats committed a season-high
17 turnovers ... Tarczewski shot 6-of-6 from the floor ... Adams had 11
rebounds ... UCLA's reserves outscored Arizona 31-14.
The Sports Network