March 9, 2000
LOS ANGELES - Jason Kapono scored 10 of UCLA's final 17 points as the Bruins hung on to beat Washington State 65-58 Thursday night for their fifth straight victory.
Kapono had 15 of his 17 points in the second half when the Bruins (18-11, 9-8 Pac-10) blew an 11-point lead and needed the freshman's steady shooting. He hit 7 of 8 free throws in the final 4:10.
Kapono overtook Reggie Miller for third on UCLA's list of single-season 3-point shooting with 70, the most ever by a freshman. He needs nine to break the school record of 78 set by Tracy Murray in 1992.
Dan Gadzuric added 12 points and 12 rebounds for the Bruins, who were coming off road victories at California and then-No. 1 Stanford last week in a late-season push to earn an NCAA tournament berth.
The Cougars (6-21, 1-16) continued their streak of never beating the Bruins in Los Angeles. They are 0-43 here since 1950, giving UCLA the third-longest home winning streak in NCAA history.
Chris Crosby led Washington State with 15 points and Eddie Miller added 14.
UCLA opened the second half with a 13-6 run, including three straight 3-pointers, to take its first double-digit lead, 42-31.
It didn't last long. The Cougars outscored UCLA 20-7 to take a 51-49 lead with 4:28 remaining on a 3-pointer by Crosby. He had nine points in the spurt, while the Bruins struggled with turnovers and missed shots.
But Kapono came through in the clutch, as he has many times this season. He grabbed a miss by Ray Young in the lane and scored and was fouled by Mike Bush, the Cougars' leading scorer who fouled out with six points at 4:10 remaining.
Kapono completed the three-point play to put UCLA back in front 52-51.
Crosby hit one of two free throws to tie the game before Kapono was fouled on a 3-point attempt. He sank all three free throws to put the Bruins ahead for good, 55-52, with 3:24 left.
Crosby again hit one of two free throws before UCLA reeled off six straight points for a 61-53 lead. Before that, the Cougars were down by four points when David Adams intentionally fouled Kapono, who hit both free throws and effectively ended Washington State's upset hopes.
By BETH HARRIS
AP Sports Writer