The Bruins were on the verge of heading into halftime down double figures, until their senior hero gave them the boost they needed to turn things around Friday night in Seattle.
No. 9 UCLA women’s basketball (16-3, 5-2 Pac-12) trailed Washington (10-7, 2-5) for the entire first half, going down by as many as 12 points with four seconds to go in the second quarter. Instead of folding, though, the Bruins got the ball to guard Charisma Osborne, and she swished a bomb from past center court that gave her team some much-needed momentum.
That led to UCLA staging a 16-0 run on the other side of the break, and they eventually came away with a 51-47 road win.
After scoring just five points in the first quarter and 10 in the second, they overcame a nine-point halftime deficit by winning the third quarter 22-8. Forward Line Sontag played a major part in that swing, opening the half with a 3-pointer and contributing seven points to the decisive 16-0 run.
Osborne, guard Kiki Rice and guard Camryn Brown chipped in as well to help turn the tides, and it was forward Gabriela Jaquez and guard Gina Conti added buckets later in the third to retain the lead. Conti sank a 3-pointer and Rice knocked down a jumper to put UCLA up by 10 early in the fourth, but Washington wasn’t done just yet.
The Huskies went on an 8-0 run to battle their way back into it, all while the Bruins missed seven shots in a row. Rice finally broke the cold streak, but Washington answered with a pair of free throws to cut the lead back to two with 1:36 to go.
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Sontag hit both of her attempts at the line to create a bit of separation, though, and despite Osborne and Conti each going 1-for-2 from the stripe, the Bruins still managed to pull back ahead by six points with 15 seconds remaining.
Although it wasn’t as dominant a defensive stretch as their one in the third quarter – when Washington missed 11 shots in a row to open the second half – UCLA notably held their opponent to 1-for-6 shooting in the last five minutes to close out the victory. The Huskies also turned the ball over four times in that stretch, and were ultimately unable to storm back in the final moments.
Osborne and Rice co-led the Bruins with 12 points each, while Sontag dropped 11 to go along with her eight rebounds. Not a single Husky broke double digit points.
UCLA will wrap up its weekend with a game at Washington State on Sunday. That matchup will tip off at 12 p.m. and be televised on Pac-12 Los Angeles.
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