UCLA 75, California 68
LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Reggie Miller scored 11 of his 28 points in the final 10 minutes, helping 18th-ranked UCLA pull away to defeat California 75-68 in a semifinal game of the Pacific-10 Conference basketball tournament.
After Cal’s Chris Washington hit a 3-pointer to pull the Bears within 67-65 with 2 1/2 minutes remaining, the Bruins scored the next six points over a two-minute span to notch their 23rd consecutive victory over Cal at Pauley Pavilion. UCLA is 23-6 overall, California 18-14.
The victory was the 19th in 21 games for the Bruins, who advanced into the finals against the winner of the Oregon-Washington game later Saturday.
Jack Haley began the run for UCLA by hitting a free throw. Freshman Trevor Wilson hit an off-balance jumper and Miller sank two free throws to put the Bruins up 72-65 with one minute left. Wilson capped the spurt with a free throw with 35 seconds left.
Jerome ″Pooh″ Richardson added 13 points for UCLA, which has now beaten Cal in 54 of 55 meetings since 1960.
Kevin Johnson and reserve Eddie Javius led Cal with 13 points apiece and Dave Butler added 12.
With the score tied 49-49, UCLA went on a 12-3 spurt. Miller’s 3-point basket with 9:07 left made it 61-52.
The Golden Bears battled back to within 63-60 on a short jumper by reserve Eddie Javius with 5:19 to play. Cal missed a chance to get closer 30 seconds later when Butler missed the front end of a 1-and-1.
The game was interrupted with 13:18 left to play by a brief altercation between Cal’s Jon Wheeler and UCLA’s Trevor Wilson, who squared off to do some finger-pointing. Before order was restored, both benches emptied onto the court and UCLA Coach Walt Hazzard and Cal Coach Lou Campanelli each had to be restrained.
Miller had 12 points in the first half. He followed a three-point play with two free throws that put UCLA ahead 31-23 with 5:42 left in the period.
Cal then outscored the Bruins 10-2, tying the game at 33 on a three-point play by Hartmut Ortmann with 1:54 remaining in the half.
After Wheeler made a layup for Cal, Haley hit a turnaround jumper with five seconds left to make the score 35-35 at halftime.