Thursday, November 15, 2012
Rapid Reaction: UCLA 100, James Madison 70
By Peter Yoon
LOS ANGELES--The UCLA Bruins, two nights after looking sluggish and escaping with an overtime victory, dominated James Madison, 100-70, Thursday night at Pauley Pavilion.
A quick breakdown of the game:
How it happened: UCLA never trailed as the Bruins raced to a 26-8 lead midway through the first half and held James Madison to making only three of its first 16 shots. UCLA led 63-29 at halftime, then cruised through the second half.
This was the Bruins team that was expected this season, playing an efficient, up-tempo offensive game with balanced scoring across the board. Larry Drew II (12 assists) ran the offense, Joshua Smith (11 points, six rebounds) dominated the middle, Jordan Adams (25 points, 4-of-6 on 3-pointers) was draining outside shots, Norman Powell (27 points on 10-of-14 shooting) displayed his tremendous athleticism and Kyle Anderson (12 rebounds) dominated the boards while David Wear and Travis Wear (combined for 16 points and seven rebounds) played smart, steady games.
Player of the game: Adams became the first UCLA freshman to begin his career with three consecutive 20-plus points games. Freshmen were not allowed to play before the 1973-74 season, so players such as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (then Lew Alcindor) and Bill Walton never had the chance. Adams was the first player of any class to score 20 or more in three consecutive games at any point in the season since Arron Afflalo in January 2007. Powell had a career-high in points.
Stat of the game: UCLA reached 100 points for the first time since Dec. 15, 2009, against New Mexico and only the third time in the Ben Howland era. The most UCLA points under Howland came in a 113-62 victory over Wyoming on Dec. 23, 2008. Also, the Bruins had 27 assists as a team.
What it means: The performance has to be taken somewhat in perspective because James Madison was a 12-20 team last season and was playing its season opener after a cross-country trip. Still, it's a nice confidence booster for the Bruins after struggling against UC Irvine and before heading to New York for a matchup against Georgetown and possibly against No. 1 Indiana.
What’s next: UCLA will face Georgetown on Monday at 5 p.m. PT at the Barclays Center in New York.