Michaela Onyenwere scored 19 points and grabbed six boards. Lauryn Miller earned herself another double-double performance, but No. 8 UCLA came up just short in a 71-64 defeat to Oregon State at Pauley Pavilion on Sunday.
UCLA went a perfect 17-for-17 at the charity strike, but it did not translate into its overall day shooting where the Bruins shot 28% from the field. The first quarter proved to be a defensive battle, where the Bruins only scored six points midway through the opening period.
Onyenwere took matters into her own hands leading the team on an 8-0 scoring run through the last 3:31 of the first quarter to give the Bruins a five-point lead at the end of the period.
The Beavers went on a run of their own in the second quarter outscoring UCLA 23-13 behind nine made field goals from a variety of different players. The Beavers took a 36-31 lead into the break.
Oregon State was led by Aleah Goodman who scored 20 points and contributed nine assists, with seven rebounds on 6 of 13 shooting, seven of those points came in the fourth quarter which put the Beavers over the top.
The Bruins played Oregon State tough going on another scoring run to start the second half. UCLA got help from Charisma Osborne who scored 11 to keep pace with a rolling Beavers squad.
Overall, UCLA had a hard time getting things going in the fourth quarter where the team’s leading scorers on the day shot a combined 4 of 19 while the team shot 5 of 21, leading to the team’s second-worst shooting performance of the season allowing Oregon State to get out in front and ultimately ice the upset win for the Beavers.
Head Coach Cori Close after the game addressed the team’s shooting woes which traced back to pregame warmups. “The staff said we didn’t shoot very well in warmups and we let it affect our energy and our togetherness and our talk,” Close said. “That really showed on the court and we splintered way too much. That’s not what Bruins do. … That’s not our culture.”
With one game left in the regular season, there’s not much wiggle room for the Bruins and players like redshirt junior guard Lindsay Corsaro said Close challenged the team to take things from this game & carry it over to a strong postseason run.
“We have one more regular-season game; … from here on out, if you lose, you’re done in some capacities,” Corsaro said. “(Close) really just challenged us like, ‘How much is this going to teach us? How are we going to use this for something for good?’
With the loss, the Bruins fall two games back of second-place Arizona at 13-4 (11-4 in conference).
UCLA looks to get the sour taste of a loss out of their mouth and end their season on a high note, welcoming crosstown rival USC to Pauley Pavilion on Friday night before heading to Las Vegas to gear up for the Pac-12 Tournament beginning on March 3.