Charisma Osborne leads No. 5 UCLA to victory over Washington
Charisma Osborne scored 21 points, Michaela Onyenwere added 15 and No. 5 UCLA hammered Washington 84-50 on Sunday.
Osborne, the Pac-12’s leading scorer, reached 20 points for the seventh straight game as the Bruins (11-3, 9-3 Pac-12) sent the Huskies (4-10, 1-10) to their eighth straight loss. UCLA also got 14 points from Emily Bessoir in a near-perfect shooting night.
UCLA has now won six of its last seven after losing for the first time in 2021 at Washington State on Friday. It was the first time the Bruins had played two scheduled games in a weekend since Dec. 19 and 21 due to the pandemic.
“Every game tells me something and right now, when you’re in February, you better be going in the correct direction and you don’t have time to take steps back,” UCLA coach Cori Close said. “I’m glad we were able to get through two games in a weekend with how beat up we are. I mean literally we only have four players that practice on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and so it’s really challenging.
The Trojans’ rivalry victory over the Bruins was just another step forward in a long and ongoing climb toward greater things.
The Bruins ran out to a 37-16 halftime advantage with Bessoir scoring nine straight at one point and led by as much as 28 early in the second half, using its defense to stifle the Huskies.
“I was much more pleased with the way we took away what Washington’s first and second looks are, both individually and their tendencies, but also their team things that they want to do,” Close said. “I thought we were much better at that.”
Washington shot just 8 of 30 from the floor (26.7 percent) and missed all 11 of its 3-point shot attempts in the first half. The Huskies also committed 21 turnovers in the loss.
“They were the aggressor,“ Huskies coach Jody Wynn said. “We actually tried really hard to score the ball in the paint. We couldn’t get ourselves to the free-throw line and didn’t make a 3 the whole first half. It was a challenge to score the ball.”
The Bruins outscored the Huskies 15-4 in the final 8 minutes of the first half, including seven straight quick points in a minute on two Natalie Chou hustle plays and an Osborne 3 that made it 29-12 with 6 minutes left. Onyenwere and Osborne teamed up for another quick 7-0 run to start the second half, pushing the lead to 44-16 with 7:45 left in the third quarter. The two UCLA stars also had seven rebounds and three assists apiece.
Former UCLA gymnast Rachel Luba is the sports agent for reigning pitcher Trevor Bauer, who signed a three-year, $102-million deal with the Dodgers.
“We had a hard conversation before practice about just being able to do our jobs and being consistent and elite basketball players, so I think that everyone just took that really to heart,” Osborne said.
Haley Van Dyke led Washington with 13 points. No other Huskies player reached double figures.
UCLA: The win got the multifaceted Bruins back on track. After going 5-0 in January, UCLA lost its first game of February, falling 67-63 to Washington State last Friday. The Bruins had an easy 21-point lead at halftime against the Huskies and had all facets of their offense working with just five regular-season games left.
Washington: The Huskies had little going on offensively against the Bruins, mostly capitalizing on grit in the paint. They have reached 60 points just twice during the losing streak. Things will only get more difficult as they head out on the road next weekend.
UCLA: The Bruins will continue a stretch of four straight road games with a trip to Utah on Friday.
Go beyond the scoreboard
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