UCLA beats California 98-83 to start Pac-12 play at 2-0
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kris Wilkes scored 18 points, and UCLA pulled away in the second half to beat California 98-83 on Saturday, giving the Bruins a sweep on opening weekend of Pac-12 play.
Moses Brown added 16 points and nine rebounds, Chris Smith had 15 points and reserve David Singleton had a second straight career high with 14 points for the Bruins, who ended the week on a winning note after it began with the firing of coach Steve Alford amid a four-game skid.
Interim coach Murry Bartow took over and has the Bruins playing a fast-paced style that is drawing cheers instead of boos inside Pauley Pavilion. Their points were the most the team has scored this season.
UCLA (9-6, 2-0 Pac-12) used a 12-2 run to go up 72-58, with Brown and Smith combining to score 10 of the 12 points.
Cal (5-9, 0-2) opened the second half on a 14-10 run to get within four, but the Golden Bears never got any closer. They haven’t won at UCLA since Feb. 11, 2012, a span of six straight losses.
Darius McNeill scored 23 points to lead Cal. Justice Sueing added 18 points and nine rebounds. Sueing made all eight of his free throws, while the Bears were 21 of 25 from the line.
California: The Bears need to regroup after giving up 82 points in a loss at USC and 98 to UCLA. After having just two games with double-digit turnovers last season, they committed 19 against the Bruins.
UCLA: The Bruins are playing at a faster speed under Bartow and they appear much more energized. They’ve topped 90 points in both games under him. Their next test comes with a three-game road trip to the Oregon schools and rival USC.
California: Hosts Arizona State on Wednesday.
UCLA: Visits Oregon on Thursday.
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