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MARCH MADNESS / NCAA TOURNAMENT

Ucla Game Report

Charting The Lead: A look at the Bruins' lead or deficit by the minute

March 23, 2001|ERIC STEPHENS | Times Staff Writer

FIRST HALF

UCLA: 26

DUKE: 33

What Happened: The premier matchup of the tournament didn't live up to the hype. Duke scored 12 consecutive points in the opening minutes and kept the Bruins at arm's length despite shooting a horrid 29%. Chippy play ruled. Duke's Mike Dunleavy was clipped on the nose by Earl Watson and minutes later, Jason Williams gave Watson a retaliatory shot. Watson made the first basket of the game but was held in check as Williams and Chris Duhon switched on him defensively. With that, the Bruins' offense was never in sync. Dan Gadzuric was effective but didn't get the ball enough. UCLA made only eight of 29 shots. Duke center Carlos Boozer, playing his first game in three weeks, had two points in nine minutes. Shane Battier made a bank shot and two free throws to give Duke an 11-point lead, its largest, with 53 seconds remaining. Billy Knight made two three-point shots to keep the Bruins from falling further behind.

What You Won't Find in the Box Score: UCLA Coach Steve Lavin put Jason Kapono back in the game with 2:27 remaining, even though the forward had three fouls. Instead of letting Casey Sanders have an easy layup, Kapono challenged the Duke forward and picked up his fourth. The foul situation affected the sophomore the remainder of the game.

Winning Number: Six. The number of points Knight scored in the final 50 seconds.

Wrong Number: Four. The number of fouls and points for Kapono, the Bruins' leading scorer.

Leading Scorers: UCLA--Knight 7. Duke--Battier 14.

Leading Rebounders: UCLA--Matt Barnes 6. Duke--Battier 8.

SECOND HALF

UCLA: 63

DUKE: 76

What Happened: Predictably, the level of play picked up for both teams. Duke scored six points in a row to push the lead to double digits, but UCLA refused to fold. Lavin gambled and put Kapono back in the game with 17:23 left and he responded with four points in a 9-0 run to get UCLA within three. Williams, who was guarded well by a host of Bruin defenders in the first half, showed why he is the nation's premier point guard with a stunning display of three-point shooting and penetration. Sensing the moment, Watson didn't back down and began to look for his shot. At different times, UCLA cut the Duke lead to seven, eight and six points. Yet, the Bruins wasted too many possessions and missed on the chances they had to get closer.

What You Won't Find in the Box Score: Because Kapono and, later, Watson had four fouls, the two could do little defensively. Lavin did a classy move in taking Watson out with 30 seconds remaining to give him a final ovation.

Winning Number: 19. The number of consecutive points scored for Duke by Williams, who single-handedly fended off a couple of UCLA threats at a critical point in the half. He says he's coming back to Durham next year. Coach Mike Krzyzewski can only hope he does.

Wrong Number: 12. The difference in made free throws between UCLA and Duke. The Blue Devils, who had made 281 more free throws than their opponents before the game, connected on 24 of 30, including their final nine.

Leading Scorers: UCLA--Watson 13. Duke--Williams 26.

Leading Rebounders: UCLA--Barnes 5. Duke--Battier 3.

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