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UCLA Women Can’t End Streak Against Stanford

Times Staff Writer

UCLA’s women’s basketball team stayed with Stanford as long as it could, but the No. 10 Cardinal eventually pulled out a 63-54 victory in front of 5,258 at Maples Pavilion.

It was the 10th consecutive victory for Stanford over UCLA. The Cardinal, 20-5 overall and 13-3 in the Pacific 10, held on to its one-game conference lead over Arizona. The loss ended a winning streak at six games for the Bruins, who are 15-11 overall and remain fifth in the conference at 10-7.

Stanford senior and two-time All-American Nicole Powell said goodbye to her home court of the last four years with 14 points, including 10 in the second half, and 15 rebounds, the 45th double-double of her career. Sebnem Kimyacioglu came off the bench to score 13 points.

“I don’t think I can put [the four years] into perspective yet,” Powell said. “I didn’t really know how I’d feel today. This has been such a special experience.”

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UCLA freshman Noelle Quinn led all scorers with 17 points and 12 rebounds but that ended a streak of six consecutive games of 20 or more.

“I had a lot of good looks, but I just didn’t put it in the basket today,” said Quinn, who was 5 of 19 from the field.

The signature elements of the Bruins’ winning streak -- streaky three-point shooting, an active defense and board dominance -- were in evidence as UCLA put together its 26-24 halftime lead. The Bruins made only 11 of their 33 shots (33.3%), but were four of eight from beyond the three-point stripe. They outrebounded the bigger Cardinal in the half, 23-18.

Stanford had looked comfortable in half-court sets, trying to work the ball inside. But the Cardinal got caught up in the Bruins’ style of running up and down the floor and taking quick shots -- a reason Stanford shot 34.5% in the first half. Powell, thanks in part to two fouls, had two baskets in six shots.

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“I thought it was a good first half,” UCLA Coach Kathy Olivier said. “We were trying to stay in the game early, make sure they didn’t get on a run. But Nicole’s such a good player I knew we couldn’t keep her under wraps. How often is she going to do what she did in the first half?”

Stanford didn’t slow UCLA down in the second half, but it got the decisive spurt it was looking for. While down, 32-31, at the 15:06 mark, the Cardinal exploded with a 20-5 run that put them in charge 51-37.

UCLA called timeout and responded with a 13-2 run of its own to close within three.

That was as close as the Bruins got.

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