Hoping to get its second consecutive top-25 upset in Los Angeles, Stanford men’s basketball (12-7, 5-4 Pac-12) came up short Saturday night against No. 7 UCLA (16-2, 8-1 Pac-12), falling to the Bruins 66-43.
UCLA, which was without star guard Johnny Juzang, was still able to rack up points on offense, thanks in part to a dismally out-of-rhythm Cardinal team.
In the first 15 minutes of basketball, Stanford could not find its way on offense. The Cardinal registered just 10 points, to go along with 10 turnovers and 10 personal fouls, a stat line that commentator Bill Walton called “the wrong type of triple-double.”
The Cardinal fared better in the next two minutes, as sophomore guard Michael O’Connell turned a steal into two points and junior forward James Keefe hit a pair of free throws.
However, the final minute saw the resurgence of the Bruins’ distance shooting, as they made two 3-pointers to close the half. Heading into halftime, Stanford trailed 37-18.
Neither team shot well in the first half, especially during the first 15 minutes of the game. Stanford scored just nine times on 39 possessions and posted a higher turnover percentage (35.9%) than field goal percentage (20%). UCLA shot 36.7% from the field.
In addition to shooting woes, Stanford found itself in foul trouble in the first half. Senior forward Jaiden Delaire recorded two quick fouls to start the game and only played five minutes in the half as a result. Also, for the first time since the Cardinal’s Nov. 28 loss to Colorado, freshman forward Harrison Ingram was held scoreless in the opening period.
Early in the second half, Ingram scored his first two baskets of the game. However, his offensive output was swiftly quelled by the Bruins, and he would not score for the remainder of the game.
The first 10 minutes of the second half gave Stanford hope for a potential comeback. With 10:49 to play, the Cardinal had cut the Bruins’ lead to 14. However, the Bruins went on a 7-0 run over the next four minutes, which all but secured their win over Stanford.
After a couple fouls and some last-minute free throw shooting, the game ended 66-43.
One bright spot for the Cardinal during the second half was the emergence of freshman guard Isa Silva. Off the bench, Silva made two 3-pointers and a layup for a team-high 8 points.
Behind Silva, Keefe and Delaire chipped in 7 points apiece. Sophomore forward Brandon Angel led the Cardinal with six rebounds, followed by junior forward Spencer Jones, Keefe and Ingram, who recorded five boards each.
Stanford will look to bounce back at home, as it takes on Cal (9-12, 2-8 Pac-12) on Tuesday. Tip-off is slated for 7 p.m. PT.