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LOS ANGELES — The Wildcats could not stop nationally ranked UCLA as the No. 22 Bruins knocked off Weber State 83-60 Sunday afternoon at historic Pauley Pavilion.
The Wildcats got off to a hot start and led 16-11 six minutes into the game. That's when the Bruins went on a 17-2 run over the next 3:30 and took a 28-18 lead midway through the first half. The Wildcats cut the lead to seven points late in the first half but a three-pointer by UCLA at the buzzer gave the Bruins a 10-point halftime lead.
WSU cut the lead to seven again to start the half after a Jeremy Senglin three-pointer but it was all UCLA the rest of the way. The Bruins responded with a 30-7 run over the next 10:00 and took their largest lead of the game at 30 points halfway through the half.
The Wildcats came back with an 11-3 run to cut the lead to 20 points at 77-57 with 4:32 to play but never got closer the rest of the way. For the game the Wildcats shot just 39 percent from the field, compared to 49 percent shooting for UCLA. The Bruins also outrebounded the Wildcats 42-28. UCLA also had 20 assists.
"I thought we competed and played really hard tonight," said WSU head coach Randy Rahe. "We played against an outstanding team with really good talent on their court and I thought they really cranked it up a notch on us. Shots didn't go in for us and UCLA had something to do with that but I was really pleased with our effort."
Individually, freshman Richaud Gittens led the Wildcats with a career-high 15 points. He had 12 of his 15 in the first half and set a career-high in his second-straight game. Gittens was 6-12 from the field and added three rebounds and two assists.
"We played hard as a team and we got closer to where we want to be," Gittens said. "UCLA is a really good team and really physical. We adjusted to them and playing against a team like this can help us down the road."
Senior Davion Berry added 14 points, along with three assists and two rebounds. Senglin had 12 points and Joel Bolomboy had six points and a team-high six rebounds.
UCLA improved to 10-2 with the win and is now 8-0 at home this season. Kyle Anderson led the Bruins with 23 points, 10 rebounds and six assists.
The loss drops Weber State to 2-5 on the season. The Wildcats will return to action Saturday hosting Northern New Mexico at 7 p.m. at the Dee Events Center in the final non-conference game of the season. WSU will play seven of the next nine games at home.