Reggie Miller is about as graceful a player as you'll find. Dave Immel, on the other hand, is not especially smooth on the court.
But the two meshed their talents Friday, triggering the decisive second-half burst that sparked UCLA to a 99-83 thrashing of Arizona State in the second round of the Pacific 10 tournament at Pauley Pavilion.
"Reggie has a gift for scoring but Immel does a little bit of everything," said Bruins Coach Walt Hazzard. "He hustles, he goes after loose balls, he sets up Reggie."
Miller, coming off a career-high, 42-point effort against Louisville last Saturday, hit 15 of 20 shots and finished with 39 points before leaving with 6:26 remaining. Immel had 6 points.
The Bruins, the Pac-10 regular-season champions, improved to 22-6 with their fifth straight victory and 18th in the last 20 games. They will meet California, a 64-57 winner over Oregon State in the afternoon's first game, in Saturday's semifinal round.
On Friday night, Washington met Stanford and Oregon played No. 2 seed Arizona to wrap up the second round.
Leading, 41-37, the top-seeded Bruins opened the second half with an 18-5 burst to delight the home fans at Pauley Pavilion. Miller had 9 points in the spree while Immel delivered dazzling plays on three straight trips down the court.
With UCLA leading 52-42, Immel found Jack Haley on the break with a bounce pass for a layup, threw a behind-the-back pass on the move to produce Miller's 3-point play, and then drove the lane for a scoop shot. Miller's steal and layup then polished off the burst to put the Bruins ahead, 59-42, with 15:53 to play. The Sun Devils got no closer than 13 points again and trailed by as many as 25.
"I felt today the way most people must have felt while I was playing for John Wooden," said ASU Coach Steve Patterson, a former Bruin center in the early '70s. "UCLA is definitely back as a top team."
Arthur Thomas scored 23 points and Steve Beck added 18 for the Sun Devils, who fell to 11-17. Trevor Wilson had 15 points for the Bruins while fellow freshman reserve Greg Foster contributed 12.
Miller amassed 24 points in the first half, including a 26-foot, 3-pointer with five seconds left, to give the Bruins their four-point advantage at intermission.
"This is tournament time so it was time for me to go," said Miller. "You just have to go out and play hard. It's for all the marbles now."
California 64, Oregon State 57--Jon Wheeler canned his first 7 shots and Kevin Johnson helped turn aside a Beavers' rally with 13 of his 15 points in the second half, as the Bears improved to 18-13.
Jose Ortiz, the Pac-10 Player of the Year, scored 23 points for Oregon State, which fell to 18-10 with its sixth straight loss.
Ortiz, who had 16 points in the second half, hit 2 free throws to bring Oregon State within 47-43 with 5:44 remaining. But Johnson connected with a jumper from the baseline, hit a soft left-handed hook and fed Chris Washington for a fast-break layup to bring Cal a 55-46 advantage with 3:32 to play. The Beavers never threatened again.
Wheeler finished with 14 points, hitting 7 of 8 shots. His only miss came with 6:20 to play.